ST Report: 3-July-92 #827

From: Bruce D. Nelson (aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 07/06/92-01:31:43 PM Z

From: aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Subject: ST Report: 3-July-92 #827
Date: Mon Jul  6 13:31:43 1992

                  "The Original 16/32bit Online Magazine"
                              STR Publishing

 July 03, 1992                                                      No.8.27

                  STReport International Online Magazine
                          Post Office Box   6672
                          Jacksonville,  Florida
                               32205 ~ 6672

                               R.F. Mariano
                            Publisher - Editor
                   Voice: 904-783-3319  10 AM - 4 PM EST

                        Support BBS Network System
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              1200 - 19.2bps V.32 - 42 bis 16.8 Dual Standard
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   FNET.. 75 ~ TNET 100:28/0 Bloom County BBS.............1-415-965-9347
   FNET. 350 ~ TNET 100:2/0  The Bounty *<Home of STR>*...1-904-786-4176
   FNET. 489 ~ TNET 100:22/0 Steal Your Face BBS..........1-908-920-7981
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 > 07/03/92 STR 827    "The Original * Independent * Online Magazine!"
     - The Editor's Desk      - CPU Report        - PORTFOLIO NEWS
     - ATARI FUTURE           - C-FONT            - THAT'S WRITE 2
     - ACTION LASER REVIEW    - COMPOSCRIPT!      - STR Confidential

                           -* FALCON IS REAL! *-
                         -* MBBS -> MNET DEBUT! *-
                     -* JOHN B. JAINSCHIGG RETURNS! *-

                           THE STORM IS COMING!

               The Original * Independent * Online Magazine
                          -* FEATURING WEEKLY *-
                "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information"
     Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information
             Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports
 STReport's BBS, The Bounty, invites BBS systems, worldwide, to participate
 in the Fido/TurboNet/Atari F-Net Mail Network.  You may also  call our BBS
 direct at 904-786-4176, and enjoy the excitement of exchanging information
 relative to the Atari  and other  computers worldwide  through the  use of
 excellent International  Messaging Networks.  SysOps, worldwide, are quite
 welcome to join the STReport International Conferences.  The Crossnet Code
 is #34813,  and the "Lead Node" is # 350.  All BBS systems are welcome and
 invited to actively participate.  Support Atari Computers;  Join Today!
                    EURONET ~ CIX ~ CLEVELAND FREE-NET


                              to the Readers of;

                  "The Original 16/32bit Online Magazine"

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                 WHAT'S NEW IN THE ATARI FORUMS (July 03)

                   ** NEW SYSOP IN ATARI 8-BIT FORUM **

 Please join us in welcoming SYSOP*Jeff Kovach 70761,3015  to the  staff of
 the Atari 8-Bit Forum (GO ATARI8).


 FONTGDOS is  now available (courtesy Atari Corp) in LIBRARY 9 of the Atari
 Arts Forum (GO ATARIARTS) along with Bob Wilson's help file.


 SoftLogik Publishing Corporation is pleased  to  announce  the  release of
 PageStream 2.2b for Atari ST/STe/TT computers!

 Users  of  STalker  version  3.01:    Be  sure to download STK302.LZH from
 LIBRARY 8 for a  program that  will upgrade  a registered  copy of STalker
 3.01  to  version  3.02.    An  original (unmodified) STalker 3.01 disk is
 required for the upgrade.
                              RECENT UPLOADS

 PACFIC.LZH   183K 03-Jul-92 Pacific Islands Demo
 XRDEMO.ARC   167K 30-Jun-92 Dr. T's X-OR DEMO
 STF36.LZH      4K 30-Jun-92 July ST Format Contents, issue 36
 UVKILL.LZH    91K 03-Jul-92 Ultimate Virus Killer (DEMO)
 MNET13.ARC   109K 03-Jul-92 MichTron BBS - Networking supported w/MNET!
 EMPUS1.LZH     2K 03-Jul-92 Patches TEMPUS II to use normal fselectors
 DIARYB.ARC    11K 03-Jul-92 DIARY v 2.4B  Very Small Text Editor ACC/PRG
 ATARIA.TXT     8K 03-Jul-92 A Dealers view of Atari
 ASTROL.LZH   269K 03-Jul-92 Astrology program
 LZH21L.LZH    70K 01-Jul-92 LZH201L.LZH Latest update to LZH201x
 CQREF.ARC      9K 03-Jul-92 Calligrapher Quick Reference prg/acc
 SLDEMO.LZH   523K 01-Jul-92 New Calamus SL DEMO Version
 PG22B.LZH    292K 01-Jul-92 PGST22B.LZH - PageSTream 2.1->PageSTream 2.2b

                       *** NEW FOR THE PORTFOLIO ***

 The ULTIMATE PORTFOLIO DEMO is now  available in  LIBRARY 17  of the Atari
 Portfolio Forum (GO APORTFOLIO), courtesy Don Thomas and Atari Corp. (This
 demo runs on a PC, not on the Portfolio) Superb graphics and  suitable for
 an in-store self-running demo/promotion.

                          HAS BEEN DESIGNATED AN



 > From the Editor's Desk             "Saying it like it is!"

     Atari's future is something to seriously ponder these days.  One can't
 help but wonder if, with the advent of the new machines.. ie., The Falcon,
 Sparrow or  whatever; "will  the new  products have  the right 'send-off'?
 STReport's entire staff wants to see Atari enjoy  a monumental  success in
 the release  of its  new machines.   This is the beginnings of Atari's NEW
 ERA.  The Falcon and its successors show all the promise we've  desired in
 machines from Atari for quite some time.

     Atari's Director  of Communications,  Bob Brodie continues "demanding"
 that users on _CIS_  use EMAIL  to tell  him they  "love" him,  sadly, the
 entire scenario  is fast  becoming the _joke_ of the year.  Head Sysop Ron
 Luks' made his desires known, (shown elsewhere in this issue),  that users
 on  CIS  respond  both  in  email  and  in public for all to see, as it is
 happening on most other  services.    What  is  wrong  with  conducting an
 information  gathering  poll  in  public  for  all to see?  After all, the
 results are bound to "touch" all of us.  On top of which we find officious
 appearing statements  being presented  by the "Director of Communications"
 that are not in the least complimentary to any of the parties concerned.

 For example, Brodie _claims_ in his editorial published this week;
     "At this point, I'm sorry to  report that  the response  on CompuServe
     has been  pathetic...far and  away the lowest number of respondents on
     any network."   ...FROM ATARI EXPLORER ONLINE #9205

     Any number of users who frequent  all  the  services,  just  as Brodie
 does, will  find the above statement difficult to believe.  Many observers
 seem to find the response on CompuServe is more than  likely comparable to
 that  on  GEnie  with  Delphi  close  behind.    As  for the private hobby
 networks, the reaction is mainly having  little or,  as in  most cases, no
 response either  way.   Director Brodie's  recent actions  appear to be an
 embarrassment which all Atarians must unfairly to bear.  Perhaps  its time
 for the  Director to  spend more time communicating about the new products
 and less time with  the obvious  "obsession".   The major  online services
 such as,  GEnie, Compuserve  and Delphi  along with the hobby networks and
 the loyal Atari users who  subscribe  to  these  services  deserve Atari's
 support on  the major services of their choice, not that users must make a
 pilgrimage and "go to  Atari."    Without  a  doubt,  the  loyal Atarians,
 worldwide, deserve much better treatment than this.

     On happier  note, the  userbase is  being treated to a generous amount
 of new programs debuting in  the  USA  for  the  Atari  ST/STe/TT computer
 platform.   This is a breath of fresh air.  Please keep an eye on STReport
 as we will be reviewing all  these great  new programs  over the  next few
 months.    Of  course,  the  entire  home  computing  industry  is waiting
 patiently for the official debut of the new Falcon'030.   By all standards
 we have  become accustomed  to, this  is going  to be  a very powerful and
 highly affordable new machine.   Atari  Advantage  Hard  Copy  Magazine is
 going  to  have  a  large  spread  dedicated  to  the  new Falcon in their
 June/July Issue.  The moment of truth is at hand <grin> get out those back
 issues of  STReport and  see if  we had  the stats right.  Have a safe and
 glorious Fourth!

             Ralph @ STReport International Online Magazine

     Today, the third of July, is my birthday,  I made  fifty!   Nicer than
 that my  first born  son Ralph,  is now 29.  Sorry, I had to 'brag' just a
 little. :-)


  STReport's Staff                      DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU!

                            Publisher - Editor
                             Ralph F. Mariano

          -----------         --------------           ------------
          Roger D. Stevens    Charles Hill             R. ALBRITTON

  STReport Staff Editors:
          Lloyd E. Pulley Sr. Dana P. Jacobson         Michael Arthur
          Lucien Oppler       Brad Martin              Judith Hamner
          John Szczepanik     Dan Stidham              Joseph Mirando
                    Steve Spivey        Doyle C. Helms

  Contributing Correspondents:
          Michael Lee         Richard Covert           John Deegan
          Brian Converse      Oliver Steinmeier        Tim Holt
          Andrew Learner      Norman Boucher           Harry Steele
          Ben Hamilton        Neil Bradley             Eric Jerue
          Ron Deal            Robert Dean              Ed Westhusing
          James Nolan         Vernon W. Smith          Bruno Puglia
                              Clemens Chin

                             IMPORTANT NOTICE
      Please, submit letters to the editor, articles, reviews, etc...
                              via E-Mail to:

                 Compuserve.................... 70007,4454
                 GEnie......................... ST.REPORT
                 Delphi........................ RMARIANO
                 BIX........................... RMARIANO
                 FIDONET....................... 112/35
                 FNET.......................... NODE 350
                 NEST.......................... 90:19/350.0



    Issue #27

    Compiled by: Lloyd E. Pulley, Sr.

  -- Atari Finally Gives Up

 Atari Corp. has withdrawn its appeal of a jury verdict and judgement in
 a federal antitrust case, according to Nintendo of American Inc.  In ex-
 change for Atari withdrawing its appeal, Nintendo says that it "will not
 proceed with its request to recover certain court costs from Atari."

 Nintendo, which dropped its exclusive contracts in 1990, now controls
 80% of the U.S. home video game market, while Atari has about 12%.

  -- PC Prices Fall 20-40% in Two Weeks

 PC prices have dropped 20-40% in the last two weeks according to Channel
 Marketing (CM), a Texas research firm.  While this is good news for the
 consumers, the news isn't viewed as favorably by retailers who are
 having to develop plans to double or triple sales to make up for the
 lost revenue.

 CM says, "Although PC manufacturers will share in the pain of lower pro-
 fits, computer retailers will bear the greatest burden at a time when
 their profits are already squeezed. For every computer a retailer sold
 prior to the slash in prices, they must now sell 1.43 systems to gener-
 ate equivalent gross profit dollars. This assumes an average price dec-
 rease of 30%."

 In a separate study, the company estimates unit sales of computer sys-
 tems will increase by 25% over 1991 unit sales, with the biggest factor
 being declining prices.

  --Compaq Offers Printer Line

 Compaq Computer Corp. is getting into the printer business with units
 unveiled later this year to be connected to networks of PCs.  The first
 models to be released will be laser printers, with models based on other
 printer technology coming later.

  -- DEC Joins Low-End Price Fight

 Digital Equipment Corp. (DEC), has joined Compaq and Dell in introducing
 a lower-priced system. Under the new pricing plan, Digital's entry-level
 PC316 will sell for $1,249, including hard drive and monitor.  Sources
 say that DEC lost $294 million in the last quarter but its PC sales have
 been growing.

 IBM is expected to announce sharp reductions in its PC prices later this

  -- Borland Ships 2.5 Million Quattro Pros

 Quattro Pro, Borland's spreadsheet application software, has hit the 2.5
 million unit mark, according to Borland.

 Borland quotes the Software Publishers Association in saying Quattro Pro
 had 30% of the North American spreadsheet market in 1991 and 25% of the
 world spreadsheet market in the same year. The company's 1992 estimates
 are its North American market share is the same, but its world share is
 up to 26%.

  -- Sun Top US Exporter According to Fortune

 Sun Microsystems once again was Fortune magazine's No. 1 US exporter, as
 a percentage of total sales.  Total Sun sales for the 1991 calendar year
 were listed as $3.259 billion, of which 49.3% or $1.606 billion was from
 outside the United States. In terms of overall export dollars, Sun moved
 to the number 19 spot in 1991, from the number 30 spot in 1990, behind
 companies many times larger in size.

  -- TI 4-meg VRAM Introduced

 Texas Instruments announced the introduction of its 4-meg video random
 access memory (VRAM) which is said to be the first in the electronics

 TI has optimized the high density VRAM to deliver what it calls superior
 graphics performance that workstation designers demand, while keeping
 chip costs low enough to make it attractive to manufacturers of high-end
 personal computers as well.

 TI's 4-meg VRAM is expected to be a cost-effective memory alternative at
 PC video display resolutions as low as 1,024 x 768 x 4 bits per pixel.
 This resolution and color combination is one of the fastest growing
 segments of the PC video market. To address this market, many
 manufacturers are developing Windows accelerators - PC add-in boards
 that are designed to boost Windows' graphics performance.

 In addition to improving performance, designers who use 4 Mb VRAMs will
 be able to reduce the size and power dissipation of systems that are
 implemented with less sophisticated memories, TI says. By using denser
 memories, they can expect to increase system reliability, and reduce
 component and manufacturing costs.

  -- Maxtor Intros 340MB 3.5-inch Disk Drive

 Maxtor Corp. released its 340-meg MXT-340 inch-high 3.5-inch Winchester
 disk drive this week. The company claims that the MXT-340 uses the same
 components and features and offers the same seek times and data transfer
 rates as its parent drives, the inch-high MXT-540, which provides 540MB
 formatted storage capacity, and the full-height MXT-1240, which offers
 1.2 gigabytes (GB) of storage.

 According to the company the MXT-340 has a low average seek time of 8.5
 ms  and achieves full 'Fast' SCSI II compliance through the use of SCSI
 (Small Computer System Interface) controller chips. According to Maxtor,
 this allows the drive to achieve a SCSI bus transfer rate of 10MB per
 second and a maximum disk transfer rate of more than 40 megabits (Mbits)
 per second.

 The high transfer rate is accomplished with a disk spin rate of 6,300
 revolutions per minute (RPM) that yields an average rotational latency
 rate of only 4.76ms, according to Maxtor.

 The MXT-340 carries an OEM (original equipment manufacturing) evaluation
 unit pricing of $895, with products to become available to OEMs at the
 end of July. The company plans for volume production to begin in the
 third quarter of calendar 1992.


                    :HOW TO GET YOUR OWN GENIE ACCOUNT:

                       To sign up for GEnie service:

      Set your communications software to Half Duplex (or Local Echo)
                     Call: (with modem) 800-638-8369.
               Upon connection type HHH (RETURN after that).
                         Wait for the U#= prompt.

                 Type: XTX99587,CPUREPT then, hit RETURN.

 GEnie costs only $4.95 a month  for unlimited  evening and  weekend access
 to more  than 100 services including electronic mail, online encyclopedia,
 shopping, news, entertainment, single-player games, and bulletin boards on
 leisure and  professional subjects.   With  many other services, including
 the biggest collection of files to download and the best online games, for
 only $6 per hour.
 MONEY BACK  GUARANTEE!   Any time during your first month of membership if
 you are not completely satisfied, just ask for your $4.95 back.

        GEnie Announcements (FREE)

  1. Friday, July 3, is a GEnie Holiday............................
  2. There's a few GEnie Mugs left.................................*ORDER
  3. Hmm .. Can I get a trademark on [YOUR-PRODUCT-NAME-HERE]....TRADEMARKS
  4. D&B Company Profiles  . Now Available Via GEnie............D&BPROFILES
  5. Coming July 1: There's =MORE= on the Coast....................*LEFT
  6. Summer's here and the time is right - for a tournament in.. BACKGAMMON
  7. GEN CON/Origins - Register Online.............................TSR
  8. Get REAL BARGAINING POWER for car & truck buying............AUTOQUOT-R
  9. Get the BIG BOOK online  & get $6 merchandise certificate.....SEARS
 10. Multiplayer Gaming is FREE This Weekend in....................ORBWARS
 11. Online Quilters Patriotic Quilt Show....Washington DC.........*HOBBY
 12. REGISTER Now For Your SUMMER COURSES..........................CALC
 13. HURRY before it's too late....................................SOFTCLUB
 14. NEW: Locate SBA MICROLOAN Sources by State...................DIRECTORY
 15. Live from Rome, Italy every Sunday (5  p.m. Eastern)...........GERMANY

 Atari Roundtable Weekly News

                               =STAFF NEWS=

 Atari Roundtable  is proud to announce and welcome the addition of Charlie
 Townsley  [C.TOWNSLEY],  Robert  Glover  [R.GLOVER3],  and   Gordon  Meyer
 [GRMEYER] to the RT Staff. They will be working in the library and helping
 out in the other areas.

                            = FROM THE BANNER =

 At last, the new  DEMO version  of Calamus  SL has  arrived, compiled June
 1992!! Almost  a year  since the  last DEMO  was uploaded, ISD and DMC are
 proud to bring you a  look  at  a  truly  excellent,  professional desktop
 publishing system  that remains  an ATARI  only product!  D/L file #24684.
    ****  Calamus SL is fully supported in CATegory 16, TOPic 20.  ****

 Last Month's Top Downloaded Programs/Utilities:

 24310 FONTGDOS.LZH             X BOB-BRODIE   920531  462848    618  20
       Desc: FontGDOS, complete with drivers
 24292 POOLFX92.LZH             X V.PATRICELL1 920530   16128    367   2
       Desc: Update of PoolFix fixes all bugs!
 24439 GVIEW1.LZH (LH5)LZH      X R.BROWN30    920609  256384    236  28
       Desc: MAJOR Upgrade: JPEG, COLOR support!
 24594 MACREAD.ARC              X T.KROFTA     920623   19840    234   2
       Desc: read mac disks on an Atari
 24411 COXCALC.LZH (LH5)LZH     X E.KRIMEN     920607   10496    227   2
       Desc: Calculator CPX.
 24539 ICONS.LZH (LH5)LZH       X ST.REPORT    920617   22272    219  19
       Desc: *  Super Icon Collection - NEWDESK *
 24519 STKR_302.LZH (LH5)LZH    X GRIBNIF      920614  121344    217   7
       Desc: Upgrade STalker 3.01 to 3.02

  Last Week's Top Downloaded Programs/Utilities:

 24594 MACREAD.ARC              X T.KROFTA     920623   19840    234   2
       Desc: read mac disks on an Atari
 24573 WHATIS61.LZH             X W.PIKE       920620   19328    133   2
       Desc: What is Version 6.1 more files IDed
 24567 SPIRIT2.ARC              X L.DOWDLE1    920620  117248     99   2
       Desc: SpiritEd, Desk Accessory Text Editor
 24635 RECIPE31.LZH (LH5)       X A.WATSON6    920625   63360     93   2
 24585 JUMPST26.LZH (LH5)LZH    X P.LEFEBVRE   920622   29184     92   2
       Desc: JumpSTART 2.6 Alternate Desktop
 24565 KV_ADDUP.LZH (LH1)       X K.KRESSIN    920620   79616     91   9
       Desc: animated math game, 4-8 yrs

         GEnie Information copyright (C) 1991 by General Electric
            Information Services/GEnie, reprinted by permission



                               BETTER COMICS

 by Dana P. Jacobson

     Earlier in the week, the Boston Globe newspaper had an item in their
 "Names and Faces" column which discussed some recent work by Rick Keene, a
 local Atari user who has been featured in STReport on numerous occasions
 because of his unique use of his Atari system.  In light of the fact that
 the movie, "Batman Returns", is such a big hit these days, we thought that
 you'd find this piece interesting.

     Holy airbrush, batfans!  While "Batman Returns" continues to clean up
 at the box office, Natick (MA) computer artist Rick Keene is flapping his
 wings over publications of "The Dark Knight Archives, Vol. 1," an
 anthology of 1940s-era Batman strips that Keene helped restore to their
 original luster.
     Keene, 38, joined the reclamation project after alerting D.C. Comics
 executives to a new way of removing color from the old panels without
 destroying them in the process.

     "With the old method, you wound up with a paper original," Keene
 explains, "and they can deteriorate over time.  Working on the computer,
 though, which still involves quite a bit of drawing, you can print out a
 clean copy ready to be archived.  Plus the original is stored on hard

     Another drawback, says Keene, was that touched-up panels done by hand
 seldom looked like the work of a single artist.

     Keene remains coy about the new process itself, which he devised on an
 Atari home computer.  Also, he points out that he had zero to do with the
 hit film by director Tim Burton - although Keene did draw the Penguin logo
 for an upcoming Batman cartoon series scheduled for Fox TV.

     However, he is a longtime comics buff as well as an admirer of
 Burton's Caped Crusader.  "In the '40s strip,"Batman has this split
 personality we can all identify with - unlike, say, Superman.  Burton
 captures that mood pretty well.  And as much as I loved Jack Nicholson as
 the Joker, I knew it was Nicholson underneath all that makeup.  Danny
 DeVito's Penguin is something else entirely."

     Ah, but what of the movie's missing boy toy, i.e. trusty bat- pal
 Robin?  "I loved Robin in the comics, especially the ones drawn in the
 early '40s," Keene concedes.  "But I'm not sure how Robin's bright costume
 would fit into Burton's dark color schemes. He'd have to change his name
 to Decoy, I guess."



   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
  |   |    """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""       |   |
  | o |    ATARI ADVANTAGE is proud to announce the first North     | o |
  |   |          American hands-on preview of Atari's hot           |   |
  | o |              new '030 computer -- THE FALCON.               | o |
  |   |                                                             |   |
  | o |  Complete Falcon coverage in the June/July issue of ATARI   | o |
  |   |  ADVANTAGE features over 10 devoted pages, including        |   |
  | o |  uncensored, up-close photographs that give you the first   | o |
  |   |  look at Atari's new entry level marvel.                    |   |
  | o |                                                             | o |
  |   |  Detailed explanations on Digital Signal Processing, video  |   |
  | o |  capabilities, and many other Falcon facets take you into   | o |
  |   |  the architecture and clarify all rumors.  We will also     |   |
  | o |  unravel the mystery of true color, stereo digital sound,   | o |
  |   |  how RAM sizes work, and other Falcon features which has    |   |
  | o |  everyone else guessing.                                    | o |
  |   |                                                             |   |
  | o |  Don't have a subscription yet?  If you'd like to get your  | o |
  |   |  hands on this issue before it has sold out, you can do so  |   |
  | o |  by purchasing the June/July of ATARI ADVANTAGE from your   | o |
  |   |  local dealer or directly from us.  To reserve your         |   |
  | o |  personal copy, please fill out the form below.             | o |
  |   |                                                             |   |
  | o |  Order your subscription today so you can be assured of     | o |
  |   |  getting this issue (which is sure to be a collector's      |   |
  | o |  edition) and future exciting issues covering the latest    | o |
  |   |  developments in the world of Atari.                        |   |
  | o |                                                             | o |
   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  -

                     SUBSCRIPTION "2 FER" SPECIAL
                          Yet another way to
            take ADVANTAGE of us!  Find a friend and the two
                     of you can subscribe for $15 each!

                Don't have any friends?  $30 will buy a two
             year subscription.  It's hard to lose either way!

   Like all great offers, this one is good for only a limited time!
   Sorry, we can't take telephone orders for a subscription at this low
   price.  Just print, clip and mail or E-Mail the following form:

  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
  All subscriptions submitted with this form will begin with the
  June/July issue which includes the Falcon coverage.

 ( ) YES! I want to take ADVANTAGE of the 2 fer offer.  Please begin
     two, one year subscriptions for me and my pal for $15 each. **

 ( ) YES! I want to take ADVANTAGE of the 2 fer offer, but I want to
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     for $30. **

 ( ) YES! Sign me up for a one year subscription at the regular price
     of $22. **
 ( ) YES! Please send me the June/July issue with complete Falcon
     coverage. I have enclosed $4 which includes postage and handling.
    ** In Canada and Mexico add $6 per year for postage; outside the
       U.S., Canada and Mexico add $10 per year for postage.
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       ( ) Check or money order enclosed      ( ) Bill Me - Subs only

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       Card # _______________________________________________

  Signature _______________________________   Date _______________
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  Name ____________________________________________________________

  Address _________________________________________________________

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  Phone _____________________________                         GE920630

  Please make checks or money order payable to ATARI ADVANTAGE Magazine.

            ATARI ADVANTAGE Magazine PO Box 803 Merlin, OR
                97532 (503) 476-3578 GEnie:  AT-VANTAGE
                      CompuServe: 70007,3615
                            PDN: ADVAN2

 Editor Note;

     At last, the truth be known, just remember folks where you read about
 the Falcon first.. over a year ago in our crystal ball feature.  Be sure
 to give Atari Advantage a try, its a first class USA publication right up
 there with AIM, Current Notes and Informer.


                             IMPORTANT NOTICE!

     STReport International Online Magazine is available every week  in the
 ST Advantage  on DELPHI.   STReport readers are invited to join DELPHI and
 become a part of the friendly community of Atari enthusiasts there.

                          SIGNING UP WITH DELPHI
       Using a personal computer and modem, members worldwide access
                  DELPHI services via a local phone call

                              JOIN -- DELPHI

                Via modem, dial up DELPHI at 1-800-695-4002
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               At Password: type STREPORT and press RETURN.

     DELPHI's Basic Plan offers  access for  only $6.00  per hour,  for any
 baud rate.  The $5.95 monthly fee includes your first hour online.

     If you  spend more  than 200 minutes online a month, you'll save money
 by enrolling in DELPHI's optional 20/20 Advantage Plan.    You'll enjoy up
 to  20  hours  online  each  month  for the ridiculously low price of just
 $20.00!  And if you go over that 20 hours, the rate goes up to only $1.20,
 still 1/5th the price of other services.

     There is  no signup fee for joining the Basic Plan.  There is a fee of
 $39 when you join the 20/20 Advantage Plan, a one-time $19 signup  fee and
 your first month's $20 fee.

     These connect  rates apply  for access via Tymnet or SprintNet (within
 the continental United States) during home time (7 p.m. to 7 a.m. weekdays
 and  all  day  weekends)  or  via  direct  dial around the clock.  Telecom
 surcharges  apply  for  daytime  or  international  access  via  Tymnet or
 SprintNet.   See Using  DELPHI online  for detailed information on telecom

   For more information, call: DELPHI Member Services at 1-800-544-4005

 DELPHI is a service of General Videotex Corporation of Cambridge, Mass.

                         :IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT:
                     DELPHI INTRODUCES THE 10/4 PLAN.
     Effective July 1, 1992, all Basic Plan members will be upgraded to the
 10/4 Plan  and receive 4 hours of usage each month for only $10!  For full
 details, type GO USING RATES.  SprintNet home time to begin at  6:00 p.m.!
 Effective July  1, 1992,  you may access DELPHI via SprintNet beginning at
 6:00 p.m. local time without incurring a telecom  surcharge.   To find the
 SprintNet node nearest you, type GO USING ACCESS.

                 DELPHI- It's getting better all the time!


 > Blue Ridge Fest! STR SHOW NEWS          Summer Fun with Atari

                         BLUE RIDGE ATARIFEST '92

  Press Release - July 2, 1992


     The Blue  Ridge Atari Computer Enthusiasts (BRACE) and Computer STudio
 invite you to participate in the  third  annual  Blue  Ridge  AtariFest on
 Saturday, July  18, 1992.   The show will take place in the Courtyard Shop
 area of  Westgate Shopping  Center in  Asheville, North  Carolina (Home of
 Computer STudio).

     Included in  the software and seminar arena we are happy to have Joppa
 Software Development with  STraight  FAX!  "FAXing  on  the  ST"  will the
 seminar to show and answer questions

  Exhibitor's who have already made a commitment to attend
  include  (Alphabetical Listing):

  Accusoft-ST (Michael Cooper) ................ PD/Shareware Software
  Applied Audio Marketing, Inc.
         (Bob Edsall, John Spencer)............ Atari Southeast
                                                Regional Rep Firm
  Atari Computer Corporation (Mike Groh) ......
  ABC Solutions (Peter Zalesak) ............... Publisher ST2, First
                                                Word, First Graph,
                                                tbxCAD, Kuma's
  Clear Thinking (Craig Harvey) ............... EdHak
  CodeHead Software (John Eidsvoog) ........... Midi Spy, TOS Extension
                                                Card, Megapaint II Pro,
                                                Hotwire, G+Plus,
                                                LookIt/PopIt, etc.
  Computer STudio ............................. Visit a 'real' Atari
                                                Dealership in the mall
  DSA (Robert Dytmire & David Munsie) ......... GP Graphics Engine -
                                                New product unveiling!
  Goldleaf Publishing (John Fox) .............. Wordflair II, Didot,
                                                Retouche, Sherlook,
  Joppa Software Development (Mark Carver)      Straight FAX!
                                                "FAXing on the ST"
  KAUG (Knoxville Atari Users Group) .......... P/D Library Disks
  KAUG (Seminar by Erik White) ................ "Beginning MIDI"
  Lexicor Software (John Cole) ................ Desktop Video Software
  Maxwell CPU (Julie Reyes) ................... Silhouette
  Reed Mountain Press (Don Terp) .............. Desktop Publishing
  Software Development Systems (Scott Sanders). NewDesk Icon Editor
                                                CPX, Printer
                                                Utilities Pak
  ST Report/ABCO Computer (Ralph Mariano) ..... Seminar on current
                                                events in the Atari
  Steinberg-Jones ............................. MIDI (Cubase, etc.)
  Step Ahead Software (Nevin Shalit) .......... Tracker ST (Nevin is
                                                Current IAAD Pres.)
  Twilight Zone Software (Wayne Watson) ....... Transcendence BBS
  Willard Productions (Clifton Willard) ....... Professional Desktop
  WorldComm (Ralph Roberts) ................... Author of several
                                                computer books incl.
                                                "Computer Viruses"
                                                and hint books

  Seminar Schedule:
         12:00    Don Terp from Read Mountain Press
          1:00    Joppa Software Development "FAXing on the ST"
          2:00    Erik White  "Beginning MIDI"
          4:00    Ralph Mariano "Current events in the Atari
          5:00    Mike Groh (Atari)

 Showtimes are 10am - 6pm.
     Advance  registration  is  only  $2,  or  $3  at the door.  Door prize
 winners will be selected from  registered  guests.    Advance registration
 checks should made out to "BRACE" and mailed to:

                             Cliff Allen/BRACE
                            c/o Computer STudio
                         Westgate Shopping Center
                       40 Westgate Parkway - Suite D
                           Asheville, NC  28806

     A  Southern-style  banquet  will  follow  the  show at the Pisgah View
 Ranch.    This  will  definitely  be  somewhat  different  from  the usual
 semi-formal type  hotel affairs  of the  other shows,  and will  be a real
 down-home, country party in the mountains!
 Dinner will be served family-style....... as long as you keep eating,
 they'll keep serving!  And check out the menu:

     Tossed Salad           Country Ham         Fried Chicken
     Cornbread Dressing     Rice and Gravy      Green Beans
     Sweet Potato Souffle   Homemade Rolls      Beverages
     Homemade desserts

     After dinner, there will be live entertainment in the air-conditioned
 barn, guaranteed to bring out he 'country' in everyone!  There's also
 volleyball and shuffleboard if  anyone  still  has  the  energy  after the
 excitement of the show.  Or how about just sitting on the porch and
 enjoying our clean mountain air.

     Advance  reservations  are  required  for  the  Blue  Ridge  AtariFest
 Banquet as seating space is limited  to 100  people.   Cost is  $17.50 per
 person  (children  under  6  are  half-price).    If  you're  planning  on
 attending, please return the  following reservation  form along  with your
 payment check as soon as possible.



 Name:  _______________________________________________________________

 Address:  ____________________________________________________________

 City:  _________________________  State:  _________  Zip:  ___________

 Phone Number:  (       )  _________________________________

 Number attending:  ______  Adults @ $17.50 each     = $_______________

                    ______  Children under 6 @ $8.75 = $______________

                    TOTAL AMOUNT ENCLOSED ............ $_______________

  Banquet tickets and a map of directions to the Pisgah View Ranch will
  be mailed to those with confirmed reservations.

  reservation form along with your check to:

     Computer STudio
     Westgate Shopping Center
     40 Westgate Parkway - Suite D
     Asheville, NC  28806


  For additional information, please contact either:

      Sheldon Winick                     Cliff Allen, Show Coord.
      GEnie:  S.WINICK                   GEnie:  C.ALLEN17
      Computer STudio                    Internet:  CALLEN@UNCA.EDU
      Westgate Shopping Center           phone:  (704) 258-3758
      40 Westgate Parkway - Suite D
      Asheville, NC  28806
      (704) 251-0201

  or the Blue Ridge AtariFest topic on GEnie (Atari Roundtable,
  Category 11, Topic 7).


 > INVISION! STR InfoFile            THE NEW "KID" ON THE BLOCK!

                              INVISION Elite

     INVISION  Elite  allows  you  to  do  gradient  fills  in the standard
 horizontal or vertical manner.    It  also  allows  you  to  do elliptical
 gradient fills.   You  can define  the ellipse  to start at and the ending
 ellipse.  You can also specify  at what  percentage to  start and  end the
 gradient fill.

     INVISION Elite's  gradient fills  also allow you a choice of two types
 of grays.  The first is a fine pattern which allows for good definition of
 objects.   This one  is similar to the gradient fills in Outline Art.  The
 second set  of  grays  uses  larger  dots  in  order  to  make  a smoother
 transition  from  one  shade  to  the  next.  If you are talking about the
 gradient fill in Outline  Art as  they are  displayed on  the screen, this
 method in INVISION Elite is superior.

 Currently supported file formats are:

    - .IMG  -  The GEM bitmap standard
    - .P?3  -  Degas compressed and uncompressed monochrome files
    - .P?1  -  Degas low resolution files
    - .GIF  -  Graphics Interchange Format, with color support
    - .MAC  -  MacPaint format
    - .R01  -  Raw mono raster data
    - .CVG  -  Calamus Vector Graphic format More formats will be supported
               in the next release.
     INVISION Elite  supports color  Degas and .GIF files and it allows you
 to select from two different types of grays for conversion.  It  also lets
 you select  the size of the resulting conversion.  Each color pixel may be
 assigned up to 64 pixels, for stunningly clear color conversions.

 .CVG files can be loaded in at any  size, with  the option  to correct the
 aspect ratio.

     Files  may  also  be  loaded  in  using  the  Atari Clipboard.  A desk
 accessory is included with INVISION Elite that enables you to  load images
 from any  GEM program  via the  clipboard.   Transferring images has never
 been this easy.

     INVISION's interface  works  in  a  way  that  is  fast,  and  easy to
 understand. Most  commands can  be accessed  from the keyboard or from the
 Icon Bar.  The Icon bar is a  column of  icons down  the left  side of the
 screen. Selecting  an icon opens a row of icons.  It is just like the menu
 bar, only it works vertically and it uses icons.  It is very easy and fast
 because it works like your eye does when you read.

     The interface  also incorporates  instant access  panning.  This means
 that whatever you are doing, you can move the image  to wherever  you want
 to be,  without having  to go  over to the scroll bars.  When you hold the
 right mouse button and drag the mouse, the image moves in realtime.

     There is also  a  fully  configurable  snap  function,  horizontal and
 vertical locking, continually displayed co-ordinates in pixels or inches.

     - Gradient fills and Gradient ellipses
     - Image bending
     - Custom patterns
     - Instant access panning (scrolling)
     - Multiple windows
     - Bezier curves
     - Block masking
     - Outlining
     - Smoothing
     - Rotation, Skewing, Scaling, and Flipping
     - Atari clipboard support
     - Multitasking support (works properly with desk accessories)
     - Unlimited size color .GIF importing
     - Built-in font editing and styling

 A few of the things the others don't do:
     - Image bending (bend any image along a bezier curve)
     - Multiple images displayed at the same time(in windows)
     - Fully GEM compatible(read as MultiTOS)
     - Use any image as a pattern(any size)
     - Masking
     - Outlining
     - Thickening, Thinning
     - Smoothing
     - White/Black Dot removal
     - Shapes, lines and curves of unlimited size
       (even bigger than the screen)
     - Clipboard support
     - Previously mentioned file formats, interface, etc.

 Plus everything else I forgot to mention.

     What I  think really  makes INVISION  Elite stand  out however, is its
 interface. It is actually fun  to  use.    I  find  other  programs  to be
 terribly cumbersome in comparison.

     INVISION Elite  has a  suggested retail  price of  $174.95 and will be
 released August, 1992.

 Thanks again for your interest.  We look forward to hearing from you.

 Please contact:

                          Power Thought Software,
                                Box No. 98,
                           275 King Street East,
                             Toronto, Ontario
                                  M5A 1K2

                        Phone/FAX:  (416) 594-9355
                              GEnie:  H.HUGH
                          CompuServe: 76266,1064


                              Harlan Hugh, Power Thought Software


 > ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine          The wires are a hummin'!

                           PEOPLE... ARE TALKING

 On CompuServe
 compiled by Joe Mirando

 Because I have a need for a portable computer and I'm already familiar
 with the GEM Desktop of the ST, I've been watching for any developments
 relating to Atari's portable, the ST BOOK.  Evidently, others share my
 thoughts, as Bob Wilson shows in the ATARI PRODUCTIVITY forum:

     "Have they released the ST book in the UK?. Here it is just a rumor
     and an overpriced and underpowered one at that."

 Larry Green also mirrored some of my thoughts when he posted:

     "Before you pay out for the ST book, give STacey a rethink!  I have
     seen them selling in the UK shows for under  UKP 500!  That was for
     2Mb/40HD.  I know that battery life was a nightmare, but it's nearly a
     3rd of the price."

 I guess we will have to wait and see if the rumor that the ST BOOK is
 being re-worked to include a back-lit display and faster CPU.  When/if the
 news breaks, I'll be sure to include it in People... Are Talking.

 Meanwhile, although People in-the-know have stated that TOS 2.05 (Mega
 STe version) would not correctly support high density floppy disks (1.44
 meg) and that 2.06 is the "lowest" version to support them, several people
 have reported that their machines bearing both TOS 2.05 and high density
 drives work perfectly.

 Rob Huggins posts:

     "Confirming that my MegaSTE has TOS 2.05 and a functioning high
     density (1.4M) disk drive (also functioning hard drives<g>). I think
     the matter of a HD floppy is more related to the disk controller chip
     than to the TOS version."

 Jeff Kovach says:

     "I'm thoroughly confused.  I too had heard that TOS 2.06something was
     needed to use a HD floppy.  But, my new Mega STE has TOS 2.05 and a HD
     floppy.  And it's working fine.  Can anyone offer the truth on this

 Ian Braby joins in the fun:

     "I think the _real_ point is that for a MegaSTE to use an HD floppy
     you need, not only TOS 2.06 (TOS 2.05 _doesn't_ allow for 1.44Mb
     formatting) _PLUS_ the AJAX floppy controller (rather than the usual
     WD chip).  Only this combination, I'm assured, will work; testified to
     by the fact that the "official" (and, so far in the UK, totally
     unobtainable) HD floppy upgrade kit includes not only the drive, but
     replacement TOS 2.06 and AJAX chip."

 Jeff Kovach counters with:

     "My new Mega STE has TOS 2.05 and formats to 1.44Mb from desktop with
     NO problems. (Please don't tell my computer it shouldn't work!)  And,
     using FCOPY, I've been able to format up to 1.8Mb.  We are all

 Clive Parker relays his experiences with high density disks:

     "I use a Mega STE which has the Ajax chip and 1. 44 Mbyte drive and
     have had no problems with it except for the fact that I am able to
     format a normal 720k disk to 1.44 without any objections from TOS 2.6.
     I have informed Atari UK and their technical support chap is doing
     some tests to check it out. I have a High Density interface and a
     Panasonic 1.44 drive in one of my home machines and TOS 2.6 will not
     let me format a 720k disk to 1.44Mb. I am using an elCo interface
     (from Germany) and I am thrashing my poor old WD1772 at 16Mhz. I have
     also installed TOS 2.06 in my STE and added a 68000 expansion port to
     enable the Ajax chip does not care if you use 720K disks or HD
     floppies  with the extra hole.  Atari did this deliberately.  Besides,
     everyone knows that the only difference between a DSDD disk and a HD
     one is that the HD one is tested an guaranteed to work, while the DSDD
     one is not, but will work 90% of the time anyway, and costs MUCH

 Jeff Kovach explains about the "regular" density floppies:

     "The Ajax chip does not care if you use 720K disks or HD floppies with
     the extra hole.  Atari did this deliberately.  Besides, everyone knows
     that the only difference between a DSDD disk and a HD one is that the
     HD one is tested an guaranteed to work, while the DSDD one is not, but
     will work 90% of the time anyway, and costs MUCH less."

 But, as with all things, there is a problem.  Intersect Software explains:

     "Jeff, the MEDIA (oxide coating the disk) if different on a HD disk.
     It's similar to metal tape vs. regular oxide for audio.  The drive
     indeed cares which is being used! While it's possible to format a 1.44
     disk 720K you should not format a 720K disk to 1.44.  It's not
     reliable.  Try recording a metal tape with a tape recorder that
     doesn't support it.  The sound quality is terrible.  Also try
     recording to a standard tape with Metal bias turned on.  Sound level
     will be very low. While you are correct that the Ajax chip might not
     care, the drive AUTOMATICALLY looks for the HD disk hole and changes
     bias accordingly. The drive also send this information through one of
     the lines back to the Ajax chip so that it knows it's not supposed to
     format a 720 K disk to 1.44."

 For those of us interested in emulating an ST on their boss's DOS machine,
 Darek Mihocka, the creator of QuickST and now of the Gemulator, tells us
 that we don't have to wait for a computer show to see the Gemulator:

 By the way, the Gemulator demo video is now being shipped out. It's 28
 minutes long and answers many questions about Gemulator as well as showing
 off it's features. So if you can't make it to one of our demos at
 Glendale, WAACE, or other shows, it's a bargain at $5 (tape and postage
 included!). Send the $5 to Branch Always Software, 14150 NE 20th St, #302,
 Bellevue, WA 98007  We're shipping the tapes 2nd day air, so you'll get
 them fast. Great for showing off to Atari user groups.
 Tony of GST Software asks:

 What about for the UK?  Does it handle things like the Cyber stuff?

 Darek replies:

     "It should. I haven't tested any of the Cyber programs specifically
     but other related programs like Degas, Degas Elite, Prism Paint, and
     CAD 3-D 2.0 all run fine."

 Now the question on everyone's mind, upon hearing about the Gemulator,
 from Tony at GST Software:

     "So, is it purely software & how much, how do I get it in the UK and
     what hardware does it require."

 Darek fills us all in:

     "Tony, no, Gemulator is both hardware and software. The 68000
     emulation is done is software, while the plug in card takes care of
     holding the TOS ROMs. You can plug in up to 4 different TOS ROMs on
     each card and have multiple cards plugged in to the same PC. So you
     can literally have every single version of TOS ever released plugged
     in to your PC, and Gemulator puts up a menu when you run it allowing
     you to select which TOS you want to boot up with. Of course, you can
     at any time pop the menu back up and reboot with a different TOS or
     even switch from color to mono, or mono to color. It's all demo'ed in
     the video. If you get any American magazines look for the Gemulator
     ad, or email me your mailing address and I'll send you our newsletter.

 Sysop Ron Luks, ever vigilant, says:


     "I wanted to give you a call, but can't seem to find your number
     anywhere.  (Please send it to me via EMAIL).

     I enjoyed the GEMulator demo very much.  (But my wife says you should
     have worn a tie. [grin])  I thought the full screen shots of the
     GEMulator screen were the most effective selling points. GEMulator
     really does seem to run as fast, or faster than a stock Atari on your
     system.  congrats!

     One thing that was noticeably absent, even when I watched the demo for
     a 2nd and 3rd time, was any hard disk icons when you were displaying
     the GEM desktop.

     I'm *sure* you're going to support the HD on the PC and not just the
     floppies, but I was wondering why the HD icon wasn't showing?"

 Darek sets all of our minds at ease:

     "The hard disk will be supported in time for the release in September.
     Remember that the video was shot over a month ago using an earlier
     version of Gemulator. The version in beta testing right now has just
     about everything already in it except hard disk support. The printer
     support work, so you can run Pagestream or Calamus, load in a file,
     edit it, and print it out on your PC printer. Once hard disk support
     is finished, it'll be ready to ship. I'm having a few hundred boards
     made up this month just in case it is ready early, so that I'll be
     able to make Gemulator available at the Connecticut show in August."

 Since I will be at the Connecticut AtariFest in August, I'll make it a
 point to scope out this, the first ST emulator for DOS machines, and let
 you know how it looks.  Stay tuned! And now a quick word about the
 Connecticut show:

     GROWS WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (May 13, 1992) - Eleven NEW companies have
     agreed this week to participate in Connecticut AtariFest '92, a
     two-day event scheduled for August 15-16, 1992 at the Sheraton Hotel
     here. The firms, representing computer software developers, authorized
     retail dealers and the trade media of the Atari community, are the
     latest exhibitors to join the line-up for the Hartford area show, now
     in its second year. Show organizers have received tentative word that
     the following exhibitors will attend the Hartford show: ABC Solutions,
     A & D Software, Atari Interface Magazine, Branch Always Software, The
     Computer Zone, Derric Electronics, Manny's Music, Maxwell CPU, Re:Port
     magazine, Take It With You magazine and Thin Air Labs.

     With three months left before the curtain rises, booth bookings for
     Connecticut AtariFest '92 are well ahead of those for the premiere
     event in Bridgeport in September 1991. To date 25 exhibitors have
     agreed to appear at the show, the last U.S. event before the
     world-famous Dusseldorf (Germany) AtariFest. The following companies
     were among the first to sign up for the Hartford program:  Atari
     Computer Corporation, Atari Explorer magazine, Boston Computer
     Society, GEnie, Gribnif Software, GFA Basic, ICD Inc., Joppa Computer
     Products, Sam Ash Music Inc., Step Ahead Software, Soft-Logik
     Publishing, Tidbit Software and Toad Computers."

 And if you're looking for information from developers, the ATARI
 PRODUCTIVITY Forum is a good place to find them.

 Steve Gold asks a question of Strata Software's Eric Rosenquist:

     I know I'm doing something wrong, but I'm not sure what.  When I run
     the remote (bbs) portion of stalker there is no problem until I try to
     run the CLI (tomshell).  I get an error message from stalker that the
     cli will not run.  I probably have it set up wrong, somewhere any
     suggestions.  ( I do have the cli in my root directory and stalker has
     its location listed in the inf file)"
 Eric replies:

     "If you're getting this error with 3.02 then it's probably because
     3.02 now refuses to run an external program in ACC mode unless NeoDesk
     or MiNT is present.  It turned out that executing another program as
     an ACC was very iffy - it works from the GEM Desktop but not from
     anywhere else.  Rather than have users get crashes I felt it would be
     better to avoid the problem. The best solution is to run STalker in
     .PRG mode when you're going to leave it in remote mode. If this is
     happening with 3.00/01, then perhaps there just isn't enough free
     memory to run the program.  It would probably be helpful if you
     modified the REMOTE script to display the error number.  Change the
     very end of the run_program() function from this:

             output_string("\r\nError running the CLI program.\r\n");
     to this:
             sprintf(cli_name, "\r\nError %d running the CLI program.\r\n",

 Well, that's about all we have room for this week.  See you next time with
 more on using your ST.


 > ATARI FUTURE STR FOCUS!  In response to Beth Jane Freeman's letter

                       "IS ANYBODY IN CHARGE HERE?"

 by Intersect Software

  This is in response to a letter uploaded to CIS:

       >> One of the little pins on my MMU chip broke off chip,
       >> and the chip would not function correctly.  The service
       >> center had no replacement available.

  The service center should have had one of those chips in stock.
  I can understand that they may have had a run on them or one of
  their employees forgot to reorder.

       >> and they had no idea when they would be able to obtain one.

  That is probably true.  My experience with Atari parts varies, I've
  received parts in as little as two weeks sometimes it takes longer.

  One of the reasons for the delay is that all parts must be ordered
  by invoice and include a check for the full amount of the order.  This
  adds 4 days (mail) to the order time.

  Someone in Atari won't allow COD orders, this in my mind is a MAJOR

  Atari has only one parts department for the US and it is located in
  California, parts shipped from there take 7-8 days to reach the east
  coast (or Florida).

  {It would be nice, but not necessary, if Atari would relocate closer to
  the center of the US.  Many California companies are moving from there
  to Tenn. and states in the SOUTH east.  The cost of living in these
  states is very low (compared with California) and the school systems
  have vastly improved in the last 10 years.}

  Parts can be ordered UPS BLUE, 2 day shipment time from anywhere in
  the US to any other point in the US.  This adds apx $7 to the cost.

      >>A message base should also be available so that experiences and
      >>ideas can be exchanged among technicians. The number for this BBS's

      >>would only be given to Authorized Atari Service Centers.

  Atari has a BBS that supports the Tech with Part #'s, prices, tech
  tips, etc.  It requires a password and authorization to use it.

  It was a very good idea but Atari is understaffed and it is not well
  SYSOPed, timely or complete.  There should be a way to correct that.
  Authorize sysops outside of Atari "proper" to support some of the
  areas in the BBS.

  Atari REQUIRED that new dealers also support MS-DOS machines.  There
  are in my mind several reasons for this:  The store would have more
  traffic, a larger customer base, (Atari only stores are generally
  going out of business in the US which is a DOS only country) and more
  interaction  with the computer industry (less inbred).

  I would add one more requirement, that they have a BBS supporting the
  MS-DOS and Atari computers.  On this BBS should be PD software,
  utilities, DEMO software, lists of Commercial software available with
  pricing, lists of hardware available with prices, local dealer numbers
  by city and state,  message base containing a HELP area as well as a
  "GOSSIP" area about future Atari hardware.

  Atari should help with ASCII files on THEIR BBS => Hardware, Software
  and dealer lists as well as DEMO software.

  If you have been a dealer for Atari for several years they you would
  have received a Dealer list, a customer list and a MIDI product list.
  Atari has been planning a CD-ROM with DEMO software for the last two
  The problem is that it's not current, sporadic and is not being
  implemented by Dealers.

      >>Each Authorized Atari Service Center should be easily identified
      >>by the consumer, perhaps with a sticker for the front door.

  I've had an Atari Sticker on my front window for two years!

      >>All service centers should have up-to-date information for each
      >>computer Atari makes.

  Until the release of the TT and STE, I had up to date information on
  all Atari products except the Atari Modem (not cost effective to
  repair a $19.00 modem) and the Atari laser.

      >>Another problem that needs to be addressed is advertising.

  Atari is constantly knocked for lack of advertising.  I personally
  think that advertising dollars are wasted in the US unless there
  is a specific market to target.

  Atari is advertising in DTP and Music magazines.  Their new
  Falcon (or whatever it is going to be called) lends itself
  to University LAB applications, DTP HIGH end, MUSIC, Medical
  imaging and doppler sonar.

  Lets wait and see what happens when the Falcon is released.

      >>Another way Atari can help its retailers (and itself) become
      >>more well known is by giving its retailers a kit containing
      >>suggestions on how to promote Atari computers in their store.

      >>There could be explanations of how to run an Atari day with
      >>demonstrations of various programs, a floppy disk with desktop
      >>publishing materials for creating advertisements with both
      >>Pagestream and Calamus, demonstrations of MIDI music, and other
      >>things that will make customer sit up and take notice.

  An excellent idea! One that should help the smaller dealer support the
  Atari properly.  They have released disks at the various COMDEX shows
  but it's been sporadic to dealers who don't attend.

      >>we have seen that Supra Corporation has announced it will cease
      >>making Atari specific products.

  SUPRA will have no product to sell for the new ATARI computers
  starting  with the TT, Falcon and any new Atari products as these
  support "off the  shelf" components, HD's etc.

      >>aware that you can get Word Perfect for the Atari, that we have
      >>two very fully featured spreadsheet programs, VIP Professional
      >>and LDW Power, that rival anything on the MS DOS market, and
      >>visually blow Lotus 1-2-3 right out of the water, for less
      >>money too.

  This is an example of inbreeding, there are several version of Lotus 123
  and LDW is indeed better than the first two.  The third version is
  more powerful than LDW.

  There are over 20 million PC's in use ( don't know the exact number)
  but only 5 million or so, the 386SX and above, are more powerful than
  the ST.

  Software authors have put GREAT effort into breaking the barriers that
  are imposed by DOS and have succeeded.  The software available for a
  PC is amazing.

  What sets the Atari apart is that 87 we had software very much similar
  to what is being touted for the PC today, 5 years later.  The TOP end
  software for the PC requires a MINIMUM hardware collection of a: 25
  Mhz 386 DX, 4 megs of memory, VGA color, 80 meg HD and mouse. And with
  that MINIMUM it's only slightly faster than a ST when running windows.

  In summary Atari MANAGEMENT is guilty of not following through.  They
  have supported their computers and hardware but not consistently!
  Management can't just drop by when they hear of a problem or once
  every couple of months.  Employees need to be inspired....if they are
  to consistently PERFORM.  This is managements job!!!!!!

  We hear of new computers to be released soon, we can only hope that
  they are released SOON and in QUANTITY at a price that will again make
  the ATARI a "POWER  without the PRICE" computer AGAIN.


 > STR Portfolio News & Information              Keeping up to date...

                         THE ATARI PORTFOLIO FORUM

 On CompuServe!

 by Judith Hamner  72257,271
     BJ Gleason and Don Messerli have developed a method for adding menus
 to batch files to make your simple batch files look like the pros.
 MENU.ZIP contains the source code from their article in the May/June 1992
 issue of Atari Explorer Magazine. The article is entitled "Portfolio
 Programming: Batch Files Menus and File Selectors".

     The mysterious absence of Don Thomas from the forum has now been
 explained.  Don was hard at work on his latest masterpiece.  Don has
 devised the ultimate Portfolio demo.  This program runs on a PC equipped
 with at least 640k mem, a 286 and VGA.  It also supports Sound Blaster,
 but it is not required. The demo is perfect for anyone shopping for a
 palmtop.  It is also good for use in stores.  Portfolio fans will also be
 interested in seeing the marvels of their favorite palmtop on display.
 PDEMO.ZIP contains over 65 files which make up the demo and is quite
 large. PDEMO.DOC contains only the docs for those who may want more
 information before downloading.

     Excitement is building in anticipation of the Connecticut AtariFest.
 The show is scheduled for Aug. 15-16.  LINEUP.TXT contains the latest list
 of participants.  This list is periodically updated as new exhibitors
 join. It also contains information on how to contact the show organizers.
 Early birds can pre-register and get a discount on tickets. The
 information is contained in the files EARLYB.TXT and CAF6.TXT.  The
 organizers want to make sure they don't lose you. Three files give details
 on travel arrangements. CTAIR.TXT contains all of the phone numbers and
 info you'll need to make arrangements for arriving by air. BYCAR.TXT
 contains driving instructions and phone numbers to call for help.
 RAILS.TXT contains info on bus and train travel.

     ST2POR.TXT is a reprint of an article from the July 92 issue of Atari
 Interface. It provides detailed instructions for bootstrapping a terminal
 from the ST to the Portfolio for the first time.

     INPUT.ZIP is a batch file utility by Don Messerli. It will allow you
 to pop up a text edit box for user input. The input can then be user as an
 environment variable for use in the batch file. This is another program
 written at the request of a forum user.

     Lee Mann has uploaded two useful utility programs to enhance the
 built-in diary application. DRYPRG.ZIP will help you keep your .dry
 program clean.  The program will purge all entries from previous months
 and place them in separate files by month and year for archiving.
 TMW11.ZIP contains version 1.1 of the utility to display today's and
 tomorrows appointments without going to the diary application.

     FIRE.TXT contains a testimonial letter from a survivor of the East Bay
 Hills fire. Uploaded by Don Thomas of Atari.

     Did you ever wonder what was the meaning of those cryptic collections
 of punctuation that you will see in online messages? :) SMILIE.TXT
 includes a list of all the smiley faces and variations.


 > C-FONT! STR InfoFile   Convert Calamus outline fonts to GEM format!

                       CONVERT CALAMUS OUTLINE FONTS
                                GEM FORMAT!

 About Fonts
     There are two fundamental types of  fonts -  bitmap fonts  and outline
 fonts. Any outline font must be turned into a bitmap before it can be seen
 on a  monitor or printed to a printer.

     A bitmap font is a collection of dots;  as such it is only  a specific
 point size.   For  instance Times  Roman in  8, 10,  and 12  point needs 3
 different bitmap fonts for the  printer  and,  for  WYSIWYG  programs,   3
 different bitmap fonts for the screen.

     An  outline  font  is  completely  different.    It  is a mathematical
 representation of a font in terms of lines and curves.   In  its own right
 it is  useless;   before it  can be used software must interpret it into a
 bitmap for display or printing.

     On Atari computers one of the  most popular  forms of  outline font is
 for   Calamus.   C-Font will take a Calamus outline font and produce a GEM
 format bitmap font for both screen and printer.

 Who needs C-Font?
     Anyone who uses software that supports standard GEM  format fonts will
 benefit from  C-Font.   This includes  COMPO's own  word processors That's
 Write and  Write  ON,  any  program  that  uses  GDOS  or  G+Plus  such as
 Timeworks Publisher  and Easy  Draw, and other software such as the Diablo
 emulator for laser printers.

 How does C-Font work?
     C-Font will run  either  as  a  stand  alone  program,  or  as  a desk
 accessory. All  you need  to do  is load  a Calamus  font (normally a .CFN
 file) and say what point size you would  like C-Font  to produce.   C-Font
 will    automatically  create  the  appropriate fonts for your monitor and
 Technical bits . . .

 Font sizes up to 99 points

 Font resolution up to 999 dpi

 User definable inter-character spacing

 Automatic superscript and subscript fonts for That's Write and Write ON

 Default information taken from GDOS, That's Write or Write ON screen and
 printer drivers.

 Full manual control of all parameters for maximum compatibility and

 Support for compressed fonts, as used in That's Write 2 and Fontkit Plus.

 C-Font costs $29.95 and is available directly from COMPO Software
 or your favorite dealer.

                           COMPO Software Corp.
                       104 Esplanade Avenue Ste. 121
                         Pacifica California 94044
                    Tel 415-355-0862   Fax 415-355-0869



  The only solicited aspect of the following letter was that I asked a
  call-in customer to fax his comments to me in writing as exactly as he
  could from our phone conversation. He asked me what I wanted him to
  emphasize and I told him to tell the truth and to simply emphasize
  what he wanted to. This is what I received about 45 minutes later...

  - Don Thomas, Atari


                                                      June 22, 1992
  Mr. Don Thomas
  ATARI Corp.
  Sunnyvale, CA

  Dear Don,

 Thank you for answering my questions about the Atari Portfolio.

 As I mentioned to you over the phone, I am a survivor of the East Bay
 Hills fire of October 20, 1991.  We had very little time to evacuate, and
 we were able to take with us only a few of our personal possessions.

 I was the last one to leave the house, and I left behind many personal
 things, including my wife's expensive pearls and many irreplaceable
 movies of our children; but one thing I did take was the Atari Portfolio.
 I took it for two reasons; one -- I'll be honest about it -- because it
 was "right there" on my desk, since I use it all the time; and the other,
 because it contained information that I thought would help us get back on
 our feet -- as it did.  I had telephone numbers of friends and relatives,
 credit card and insurance information, etc., all of which proved extremely
 valuable to me and my family in the terrible days that followed.

 I have been using the Portfolio for several years (I was one of the first
 users) and I have been very pleased with it.  It was well worth saving
 from the fire.

  Thank you and regards,





     CompoScript is a very powerful application  that permits  working with
 PostScript files on your Atari computer.

 Why PostScript?
     PostScript is  a page  description language.   It lets an application,
 such as a word processor, publishing  program, or  graphics program output
 files which  are device  independent -  this means  that you  can output a
 PostScript file that can then be printed on any PostScript  printer, be it
 a 180dpi  dot matrix  printer or  2400 dpi imagesetter.  You'll always get
 the  highest  quality  that  the  printer  is  capable  of.    When  using
 applications that can drive a printer directly or via PostScript, printing
 via PostScript often gives superior results.   There  is also Encapsulated
 PostScript  (EPS),  which  is  a  resolution  independent  file format for
 exchange of data between programs.

     PostScript has two typeface formats - Type 1 and Type 3.  Type 1 fonts
 are  generally  considered  the  highest  quality  fonts available because
 they're stored as outlines that  can  be  scaled  to  any  size,  and have
 hinting.   Hinting is a method of accurately reproducing fonts at any size
 (when outline fonts are rendered at a small  size or  resolution, unhinted
 fonts can  lose important font details).  There are literally thousands of
 Type 1 fonts available, from famous  font  foundries  or  even  the public
 domain.   Type 3 fonts are similar to Type 1s, but do not have hinting and
 are generally slower and consume more memory.

     PostScript, and Encapsulated PostScript, have become  the standard for
 data exchange  on MS-DOS,  Macintosh, and  UNIX computer platforms.  It is
 becoming  very  popular  with  Atari  users  as  well,   because  of  it's
 flexibility, quality,  and transferability  for users  who work  on DOS or
 Macintosh computers or emulators  who can  now take  files back  and forth
 with their Atari.

 Why CompoScript?
     CompoScript   gives   your   Atari   and   your   printer   PostScript
 compatibility.    At  its  most  basic  level  of  operation,  it  outputs
 PostScript files  on most  any printer.   It also lets you adjust printing
 resolution, print (or preview) the image to the screen, convert PostScript
 and Encapsulated  PostScript files  to GEM Image and TIFF (so you can load
 these files into programs  that don't  support PostScript),  adjust screen
 frequency and  angle for grey scale (halftone) images, and edit font names
 and aliases, giving you font flexibility and preventing  the problem found
 all too  often with  some PostScript interpreters which default to Courier
 when a file requests a font that isn't available.

     CompoScript is the only  PostScript  interpreter  for  Atari computers
 that uses  Type 1  fonts.   Any Type  1 font  can be  used by CompoScript,
 simply by telling CompoScript  where the  font is  located (a  matter of a
 couple mouse clicks).  It also includes 35 Type 1 fonts, which can be used
 with any application that uses Type 1 fonts!

     You may already be using PostScript, or applications that can  use it.
 We  invite  you  to  experience  the power of PostScript through our handy
 upgrade program.

     CompoScript runs on any Atari  computer  and  has  a  retail  price of
 $349.95.   Through August  31, 1992,  users who  own PostScript compatible
 software (such as UltraScript, PageStream, Avant Vector, and  even Spectre
 GCR, among  others) can  purchase CompoScript  for $200.00.  Simply return
 your original disk or, a photocopy of the disk or other proof  of purchase
 with your order (we'll even return your disk).

                              COMPO Software
                       104 Esplanade Avenue Ste. 121
                         Pacifica California 94044


 > ST -> PORT STR Tech Notes
     The ST and Portfolio Talk to Each Other

 Porting from the ST


 Bill Rayl

 Probably the hardest thing an Atari ST user encounters as a new Portfolio
 user is getting the two computers talking to each other for the very first

 The Portfolio has built-in software for file transfers via the Parallel
 Interface and the Parallel Interface comes with compatible transfer
 software to run on an IBM. Unfortunately, this method cannot be used on an
 ST, even under IBM emulation. The reason for this is that the ST's
 parallel port does not use a couple pins that are extremely important to
 this software.

 So, how do you use your ST to transfer software to the Portfolio? Every
 article written on the subject in Atari publications so far tells you that
 you have four basic options:
 Borrow someone's IBM and use it to transfer a telecommunications package
 to your Portfolio.

 Buy the DOS Utilities card from Atari or an Atari dealer (retail price
 $89.95). It has XTERM, the PD terminal package of choice for the

 Find someone else who owns a Portfolio and has already gotten a terminal
 package onto it, then have them copy it to your RAM card. (Some people
 have even gone so far as to send their cards to Don Thomas at Atari to
 have him give them a copy of XTERM!)

 Purchase TransporT from Artisan Software (retail $29.95) and use a null
 modem cable to transfer your terminal package to the Portfolio.

 Of these options, TransporT is the one I'd recommend most...if you want to
 use only those choices.

 You see, all of those articles have missed the least expensive way to get
 a terminal package onto your Portfolio from your ST. In fact, some of
 those other articles state that what I'm going to tell you here is

 Other than the cables you'd need to buy anyway to use the Portfolio with a
 modem, chances are you already have almost everything you need.

 The Supplies

 All the hardware you need is:

 An ST

 A Portfolio

 The Serial Interface for the Portfolio

 A modem cable and null modem adaptor (or just a null modem cable)

 Your best option is to use a modem cable with 9-pin female connector on
 one end and 25-pin male connector on the other. Then, get a null modem
 adaptor with one 25-pin male end and a 25-pin female connector on the
 other end.  This way, you can use the modem cable minus the null modem
 adaptor for normal telecommunications.

 If all you can find is a modem cable with 9-pin AND 25-pin female
 connectors and a null modem cable with both male ends (these do seem to be
 the most prevalent), don't worry. Just pick up an RS232 Gender Changer
 with 25-pin female connections at both ends. Your local Radio Shack should
 carry all of these cables and adaptors.

 The ST software you need is a terminal package that supports transfer
 rates of as low as 110 baud. This includes Flash! and many PD and
 Shareware packages. Chances are the ST terminal package you already use
 can handle this.

 If not, there's another option. First, you need the Atari Control Panel
 (or any software giving you the capability to set your RS232 parameters).
 Since the Control Panel comes with every system Atari sells, it's a good
 bet you already have it, even if it's not installed. Then, you need a
 program that can send information out the serial port. I personally used
 EdHak (available from Clear Thinking) to test this, and it worked

 As for the files you are going to transfer to the Portfolio, you need the

 HEXBIN.COM -- A utility to convert HEX files into BINARY runnable format.
 File size: 257 bytes. Checksum: 408D. (Checksums will be explained later.)

 XTERM2.HEX -- HEX version of the XTERM2 telecommunications package for the
 Portfolio. Supports Xmodem and ASCII file transfers and lots more.

 XTERM2.DOC -- Text documentation for XTERM2. You don't really need this
 file for the transfer to work, but you'll probably need it to use XTERM2
 effectively. You can simply leave this doc file on your ST and read it
 from there or print it out for reference.

 CHECKSUM.COM -- A small utility that gives you a Checksum corresponding to
 a given file. This file is optional to the process, but it helps. File
 size: 129 bytes. Checksum: 30A7.

 These are all Public Domain files available from the Portfolio Forum on
 CompuServe (GO APORTFOLIO). If you're at all interested in the Portfolio,
 this is THE place to be. There are literally hundreds of programs for the
 Portfolio there...all just a quick download away.

 The files are also available on this month's ST disk, in the ST2PORT.APP
 self-extracting archive.

 The Starting Block

 We'll assume you have all the files listed above somewhere on your ST. For
 this article, I'm going to describe doing the transfers using Flash. If
 you are using some other terminal package, you may need to slightly modify
 these directions.

 Start with both the ST and Portfolio turned off. It helps if you have both
 machines fairly close together, so that you can type on them both without
 moving from where you are.

 Plug the Serial Interface into the Portfolio. Attach the modem cable's
 9-pin end to the Interface, plug one end of the null modem adaptor into
 the "normal" 25-pin end (adding on the Gender Changer if needed) and then
 plug the whole thing into the ST's serial port.

 On the ST Side

 Boot up the ST and run Flash. Set the baud rate in Flash to 110 baud (use
 Alt-B and click on the "110" button). While in the dialog box, make sure
 you have 8-bits, no parity and 1 stop bit set, as well. Click OK when
 done.  If you want to watch the file's progress as it sends, you should
 also set Flash to Half Duplex (type Alt-P).
 Now, we'll go set the ASCII transfer options. Press the right mouse button
 to switch to the GEM screen. Select "Ascii UL/DL" from the Edit drop down
 menu. At the dialog box, set LINE PAUSE to its maximum of 9 and turn
 everything else off EXCEPT METERING, which should be turned on. Click OK.

 Go to the Upload drop down menu and select "File Ascii." Use the File
 Selector to find the file HEXBIN.COM. Click ONCE on the file, but don't
 send the file yet (i.e., select the file but don't press Return, don't
 click OK, and don't double-click the file!). Place the mouse pointer right
 above the OK button and leave it there.

 On the Port Side

 Boot up the Portfolio and get into Setup. Select "RS232 port..." from the
 menu. Set the Baud rate to 110, Parity to None, Data bits to 8 and Stop
 bits to 1.

 Then, select Initialize! from the menu. If you get a "Communication error"
 message the first time, try Initializing the Interface again. If you
 repeatedly get this error, there's a serious problem with either the
 Interface or its connection to the Portfolio. Turn the Portfolio off, make
 sure the Interface is firmly connected and try Initializing it again.

 Once the Interface is initialized, get to the DOS prompt (press Esc a
 couple times). At the DOS prompt, path to your RAM Card by typing A: and
 hitting a carriage return. Then, type the following (DON'T hit a carriage
 return after this yet!):


 Ready, Set...

 The next step takes a little bit of timing on your part. Thankfully, you
 don't have to be too quick about this, though. What you need to do is
 press Return on the Portfolio and then click the ST's left mouse button
 (or press Return) BEFORE the Portfolio times out trying to copy from the
 Serial Interface. You'll know if the Portfolio times out you'll see an
 "Abort, Retry, Ignore" message on the Portfolio but the ST is still

 If the Portfolio does timeout, simply type 'A' to Abort, retype the COPY
 command (or press and hold the Fn key, followed by F3) and re-setup for
 the file transfer on the ST side. Then, try it again.

 If everything goes well, the ST will finish sending while the Portfolio
 continues to display "AUX to A:\HEXBIN.COM." A few seconds later, you'll

 Not ready error
 Abort, Retry, Ignore?

 Yes, that's the same message you'll see if the Portfolio times out. That's
 why it's important that you can recognize the difference between success
 and failure here. If the ST is still sending and this error occurs, the
 transfer has failed. If the ST has finished sending and you see this
 error, everything is great.

 Type 'A' to Abort and type DIR (followed by a Return). You should see the
 file HEXBIN.COM safely stored on the RAM Card with a file size of 257

 Round and Round

 Repeat the above file transferring steps for XTERM2.HEX and, optionally,
 CHECKSUM.COM. You can use CHECKSUM to verify that the files transferred
 successfully. At the DOS prompt, simply type CHECKSUM, followed by the
 name of the file you want to test and a return. For instance, to test
 HEXBIN.COM, enter the following (with a carriage return) at the DOS


 Once you have both HEXBIN and XTERM2.HEX on the Portfolio, you're in the
 home stretch. At the DOS prompt, type the following line (with a carriage
 return at the end):


 The HEXBIN program will now convert the hexadecimal values in XTERM2.HEX
 into a binary, executable program. The output file is automatically called
 RESULT.OUT. Type, again from DOS and with a return at the end:


 The new program file should be 2,898 bytes in length and have a checksum
 of 99F3. If not...try, try again.

 That's All Folks!

 You should now have a working terminal program on your Portfolio. Turn
 your Portfolio and ST back off (just to be safe) and disconnect the modem
 cable from the ST. Keep the Serial Interface connected to the Portfolio.
 Remove the null modem adaptor or null modem cable and use the normal modem
 cable to connect the Interface and Portfolio to your modem.

 Boot up your Portfolio and go to Setup again. Reset your RS232 port to
 whatever your highest baud rate is on your modem -- XTERM2 can handle 9600
 baud with no problem! You can skip Initializing the port, because XTERM2
 will do it for you.

 Now, get to the DOS prompt again, path to A: if necessary, and run XTERM2
 by typing "XTERM2" (without the quotes) followed by a carriage return. You
 should be greeted with XTerm's copyright notice and mini help screen. From
 here on out, anything you type in is sent directly to your modem. If using
 a Hayes-compatible, you can use ATDT to dial the modem, etc. Support files
 on CompuServe can even give you a Dialing Directory of sorts for XTerm.
 Make sure to read XTerm's documentation and keep a hardcopy of the docs
 handy for reference.

 That's all there is to it, folks! It may seem a little convoluted, but
 it's basically no different than null modem file transfers to any other
 computer...except you're starting out with no transfer software on one of
 the machines.

 I should note here that it may not be necessary to use 110 baud AND set
 metering to its slowest possible option. Better to be a little slower than
 necessary than too fast, though. I have had only mediocre success in
 transferring files at 300 baud, so I don't recommend using faster than 110
 baud. At 110 baud and metering set to 9 in Flash (or Slow in EdHak), I've
 had 100% success with over a dozen file transfer attempts.

 Another important note is that you should not try this method with larger
 binary programs (like ACOM.EXE or even XTERM2.COM). It simply will not
 work, because these files contain control characters that stop the
 transfer dead. Things like Control-C, Control-D, etc. end the transfer.
 Play it safe and transfer the files listed in this article. Then, use your
 newly created XTERM2.COM to do Xmodem file transfers from then on. Of
 course, you can use this method at any time to transfer ASCII text files
 to and from your Portfolio.

 Sometimes the impossible isn't really all that hard.

                           Unicorn Publications
                           3487 Braeburn Circle
                           Ann Arbor, MI  48108
                              (313) 973-8825

           CompuServe:    70007,4640
                GEnie:    UNICORNPUB
               Delphi:    UNICORNPUB

 [NOTE: This article originally appeared in the July '92 issue of Atari
 Interface magazine. It can be freely reprinted in non-commercial user
 group newsletters, so long as this header appears with the reprint. All
 other publications must first obtain permission (written or verbal) before
 reprinting this article.


 > EPSON LASER STR Review         Epson's Action Laser II

                           Epson Action Laser II

 by Doyle C. Helms

     The Epson Action Laser II (forthwith known as EAL II) is a fine
 compliment to the Epson printer family.  This laser printer will emulate
 not only the HPLJ II Plus printers, but also the "old" reliable Epson dot
 matrix printers such as the LQ and FX series of printers.  If your
 software doesn't have a HPLJ driver, you can always fall back on the LQ/FX

     The EAL II is very user friendly when it comes to configuring the
 printer to the users specifications.  The user can easily set-up the
 printer to meet the need of just about ANY print job requirement.  The
 user accesses the set-up options via a LCD display panel.  The EAL II is
 driven by a 68000 CPU with a clock rate of 14.13 MHz.  The EAL II, in
 most cases comes standard with .5 megabyte memory.  Some distributors
 market a unit with 2.5 megabytes memory already installed by Epson.  The
 memory upgrade process is very simple.  Two screws hold a side panel
 which when removed reveal a memory board that the user simply unplugs from
 the printer and then plugs in the memory chips for the configuration they
 desire.  The memory chips are of the common garden variety DRAM chips
 rated at 80ns.

     The EAL II can hold up to 5.5 megabytes RAM.  I currently own the EAL
 II with 2.5 meg RAM and I have found no shortage of memory for my needs as
 of yet.  I have worked easily with 750K IMG files plus text and the
 printer seems to be as fast as if it was working with a normal page of
 ASCII.  Granted the computer process time for the page is increased when
 working with files this large, but the time would be the same even if I
 were using a dot matrix printer.  I have used an Epson LQ 24 pin printer
 for the past couple of years and I find the printout time is by far much
 faster with the EAL II far faster than with the LQ series.
 Let me drop an example or two on you here.

     Calamus 1.09 printing a font example CDK file containing an entire
 character set took 44 seconds from the time I clicked on PRINT to the time
 the sheet finished rolling out of the printer.  That time included the
 time for Calamus to calculate the page for transmission to the printer.
 The actual time of the EAL II print out from when Calamus finished
 calculating(drawing) the page internally to the roll out of the finished
 document was 24 seconds!  As far as ASCII print time is concerned, one
 document of 11077 bytes (4 pages) consumed 45 seconds from the PRINT
 command at the DeskTop to the 4th page of the document.  Another ASCII
 doc of 15K (6 pages) consumed 1 minute and 1 second.  The printer is rated
 at 6 pages per minute and that is what it delivers!

     The print quality of the EAL II is superb!  Black is BLACK and the
 gray scale capabilities are outstanding!  The EAL II comes with 14 FONTS
 and 16 SYMBOL sets regardless of the memory configuration you choose.  The
 EAL II manual lists 66 font cartridges currently available.  The majority
 of these font carts are the HP type.  I'm sure there are more since the
 manual was printed.  The EAL II also has a IDENTITY CARD SLOT which
 allows the user to further enable the printer to emulate other printers.
 One example given in the manual is the HP 7475A/7440A Plotter!  I have
 confirmed (through Epson) that a Postscript card is available also!!

     Another interesting feature of the EAL II is that more than one
 computer system can be used on the EAL II.  Two computers can be
 connected to the EAL II and they can be using different emulation modes
 for processing.  The EAL II actually can accommodate three computer
 systems if the user installs the OPTIONAL 32K INTERFACE board.  The EAL
 II footprint is 7 inches high, 18.9 inches wide and 14.3 inches in depth.
 The weight of the EAL II is 29 lbs.

 The EAL II comes standard with a LETTER size paper try (legal size tray
 available as an option).  The manual feed slot will also allow,via
 guides, envelopes, cards, labels or whatever the user chooses (within
 sizes limitations of course).  The EAL II has an optional accessory which
 allows up to 250 sheets to be handled at once.  These sheets can also be
 of mixed sizes.  This is possible through the AUTO feed option from the
 control panel.  The EAL II has MANY options available via the CONTROL
 PANEL which I will delve into in depth in the next installment.  I just
 wanted to hit the highlights of the printer this week so you would have an
 idea of an excellent choice for a high powered printer at an extremely
 affordable price.  Brings back memories of the old saying "POWER WITHOUT
 THE PRICE"!!  The EAL II has worked reliably for me during the past
 several weeks and I have yet to experience ANY problems, not even a paper
 jam, with this unit.  The ONLY shortcoming I have found, IMHO, is the 100
 sheet letter tray.  100 sheets is just not enough!

     The unit I purchased was from SAM's Wholesale Club for $799.00 w/2.5
 meg memory.  I also saw a EAL II at Circuit City for $688.00 with the
 "standard" .5 meg memory.  I am unsure of the "RETAIL" price.  Before you
 buy ANY laser printer check this one out, you won't regret it!

                         EPSON AMERICA Inc.
                           P. O. Box 2842
                      Torrance, CA 90509-2842

                   Epson Consumer Resource Center



                         THAT'S Write and Write ON

     You may have heard of That's Write - it's been available in Europe for
 over four years.  In fact, it's the number one selling word processor in
 Germany.  Well, after several years of limited availability in North
 America, COMPO Software has opened an office in the U.S. to support its
 products, including That's Write and Write ON.

     What are That's Write and Write ON?  They're the fastest, most
 powerful word processors available for Atari computers.  Of course, that's
 a subjective matter but we think you'll agree.  Write ON is the standard
 version, and That's Write is the professional version.

     Write ON has all the standard features you've come to expect from a
 word processor - yet its many unique features make it stand out.  Take,
 for example, font and printer support.  Thus far there have been two types
 of word processors - text processors, that use your printer's built-in
 fonts for printing (generally the fastest method, though you can't change
 fonts within a document) and graphic text processors, which can use many
 different fonts and styles, but typically are much slower.   Write ON lets
 you use both, in the same document!  Even a single word may be made of
 printer resident, downloaded, and graphic fonts - even if it's
 proportional and justified - all the while completely WYSIWYG.  Write ON's
 output speed and quality, with either font type, is sure to impress.
 Write ON supports all of the fonts included with most printers, and gives
 you access to unlimited numbers and varieties of typefaces with graphic
 fonts.  It comes with at least ten fonts, depending on your printer type.

     What type of graphic fonts can Write ON use?  Write ON uses standard
 GEM bitmap fonts, like those that you might use with GDOS.  However, Write
 ON runs without any memory-grabbing, system-slowing AUTO programs.
 Additionally, with our C-Font program installed in your system, you can
 use Calamus format outline fonts with Write ON!

     Write ON uses an extremely powerful and efficient system for document
 style and formatting - paragraph tags.  Say you're doing a document that's
 left justified in Times 12 font except for headings, which are centered
 Helvetica 14.  After typing in the whole document, you decide that
 headings should be Avant Garde - simply change the font in paragraph tag
 "Headlines" to Avant Garde.  Of course, Headlines is just an example - you
 create and edit the tags, with options like justification, line and
 paragraph separation, style, font, etc.

     COMPO has designed a protocol that allows Write ON to communicate with
 desk accessories.  Write ON is infinitely expandable via these accessories
 (which, like everything else in Write ON, can be activated and controlled
 via the keyboard).  Included with Write ON are a snapshot utility and Key
 Show, which displays the keyboard and where characters (in the currently
 selected font) are mapped to the keyboard.  No more hunting for special
 characters!  If you're not happy with the location of a particular
 character, simply remap it with the included keyboard editor.  Also
 included are a font editor and a Signum-to-Write ON font converter.
     Write ON takes standard word processing features and improves them.
 Check these out :

 -- Unlimited definable macros, be it program functions or text
    abbreviations - whatever.

 -- Edit multiple files on screen at the same time

 -- Cut/Copy/Move block, with six buffers, including the Atari
    Clipboard for transfer with other programs!

 -- Page, line, picture, word, and stroke count; Available memory, too.

 -- Automatic installation

 -- Headers/Footers, and widow/orphan control

 -- Pictures may be shown or hidden individually and scaled to any
    resolution, including that of the current printer!

 -- Built-in mail merge, using industry standard comma delimited files

 -- All standard text styles including Double Underline and Strike Through

 -- Left, Right, Decimal, and Center tabs

 -- Display font sample on screen

 -- Hyphenation, either prompted or automatic, which can be configured
    to your liking

 -- Optional password protection for any document

 -- Optional automatic save at user defined intervals

     That's Write, the professional version, adds even more features to
     Write ON :

 -- More fonts included, even Symbols, Greek and Cyrillic!

 -- Spell checker with American English dictionary of 110,000 words.
    We think it's the best spell checker available, period.  Even
    corrects capitalization and accent errors!

 -- Automatic Index and Table of Contents generation

 -- Outliner included - structure your document with up to 8 levels

 -- Footnotes/Endnotes

 -- Chaptering - if your document is too large to fit in memory, you
    can break it into chapters, for easy editing and automatic
    footnote/endnote updating!

 -- Multiple columns

 -- Table drawing

                              THAT'S WRITE 2

 Version 2 of That's Write, a major upgrade, will be shipping in July.  It
 adds many valuable features to That's Write :

 New User Interface
     Up to 9 windows which can be resized from any corner and have optional
 scroll bars.

 New Accessories
     A new Macro Editor allows you to see currently defined macros and edit
 them.  Also new is a calculator that passes results directly to That's

     That's Write 2 will read compressed fonts!  Created by C-Font or
 Fontkit Plus, compressed fonts are typically a third of their uncompressed
 size.  Saves hard disk users precious storage space and lets floppy users
 store more fonts which can be loaded faster.

 Print Preview
     Print preview on screen, with preview control.  View a full page or
 full size (1:1) preview of your printed document.

 Command System
     The new command system gives extensive new powers.  Mathematical
 functions allow automatic computing of an invoice, calculations on dates,
 automatic paragraph numbering, and graphing.

 Online Help
     Detailed online help at the press of a key.
 Improved paragraph tagging
     That's Write has had the most usable paragraph tagging of any ST
 document processor.  That's Write 2 now has even more options and
 functions in paragraph and page layouts, including a Remark layout that
 displays on screen but doesn't affect printout or formatting.

 Outline Fonts
     That's Write 2 includes C-Font, which runs as a desk accessory
 enabling you to include outline fonts in your document.  Outline fonts may
 be scaled to any size without loss of resolution.  C-Font uses the
 standard Calamus format outline fonts, so there are hundreds of fonts
 available, both in the public domain and from professional font suppliers.
 Five .CFN fonts are included with That's Write 2 to get you started.


     Write ON retails for $99.95.  We'd like you to give Write ON a shot,
 so we're making a special upgrade offer :

     Through August 31, 1992, you can upgrade to Write ON from any word
 processor for $30.00.

     If you later decide that you need That's Write, no problem.  You can
 upgrade to That's Write and transfer all of your Write ON files.  That's
 Write 1.5 retails for $199.95.  Upgrades from Write ON cost $100.00.  If
 you would like to go ahead and try That's Write 1.5, you may upgrade from
 any other word processor for $130.00.

     That's Write 2 will be shipping imminently.  Retail price is $259.95.
 Copies of That's Write 1.52 currently shipping include a special voucher
 for a free upgrade to That's Write 2.

     Upgrades to That's Write 2 cost $60.00 from That's Write 1.5, and
 $160.00 from Write ON.

     To upgrade, simply return your original disk or, a photocopy of the
 top cover of your manual, the original disk with the serial number
 showing, if possible, with your order.

                           COMPO Software Corp.
                      104 Esplanade Avenue Suite. 121
                         Pacifica California 94044
                             Tel 415-355-0862
                             Fax 415-355-0869



                             NEWS IN BRIEF FROM
                          CONNECTICUT ATARIFEST '92


 HARTFORD, Conn. (July 3, 1992)

 THE CLOCK IS the EarlyBird

     Pre-Registration  Discount  offer  for  Connecticut AtariFest '92 (CAF
 '92) (up to $2 off per person on tickets) expires in a few days. All forms
 must be  mailed with  a check  or money  order by midnight July 9. See the
 library for a copy  for the  form. THAT'S  A GUIDE  TO THE  LINKS, NOT THE
 LYNX...  Computer  programmer-turned-publisher  Brian Harvey will be among
 the guests  demonstrating  special  talents  at  the  Hartford  area show.
 Harvey, who  recently published  'Golf in  Connecticut,' a guide to public
 golf courses  throughout the  Nutmeg State,  will examine  the rewards and
 pitfalls  of   self-publishing.  The   avid  golfer  boasted  few  desktop
 publishing (DTP) skills before  undertaking this  project, but  produced a
 data-rich booklet  that is very strong on graphics. B. Dalton, Waldenbooks
 and Barnes & Noble are among the retail  chains distributing  the regional
 guide for  Harvey, who  brought it  to life  on his  trusty Atari ST using
 Calamus, dBMAN and other off-the-shelf programs.

     Speaking of desktop publishing,  Connecticut AtariFest  '92 is pleased
 to  announce  that  Goldleaf  Publishing  Inc.,  maker  of  Wordflair  II,
 Retouche, the  Sherlook optical  character recognition  system, Didot Line
 Art and  other products,  will appear  in Hartford.  Goldleaf is a part of
 Atari's  Professional  Systems  Group,   the  Direct   to  Press  division
 specializing in high-quality publishing systems.

     Local Atari  enthusiasts will grab a share of the spotlight at CAF '92
 when Ken Kittredge of Wethersfield, Conn.  based Mach  1, a  Korg M1 Users
 Group, demonstrates  the M1.  The group,  which boasts a growing number of
 Korg T-series keyboard  owners,  has  been  meeting  at  the  nearby Music
 Exchange on  the last  Wednesday of  each month, and has mostly disk-based
 libraries for both voices and sequences.  Members receive  6 newsletters a
 year that help them get the most out of their synthesizers. Kittredge, who
 works as a bridge  engineer, admits  that his  playing skills  don't rival
 those  of  a  professional  musician,  but he still enjoys being 'an audio
 adventurer by night.'

     WE'RE ONE STEP AHEAD OF YOU'  When  Atari  Explorer  Online  hyped the
 scheduled CAF  '92 dinner-dance  (Saturday, August  15) in a recent issue,
 former AEO editors John Jainschigg  and  Peter  Donoso  (also professional
 musicians; Donoso  is CAF  '92 music  coordinator), who plan to perform in
 the unique Atari 'jam session' elaborated:

     "Yeah, man .. since  the release  of our  album, 'Welcome  to the (Not
     Just a  Game) Machine,'  last year, we feel like we've lost touch with
     the small club and user-group show audience," said  Jainschigg. "So we
     thought it  would be  a good  idea to rediscover our roots, do a small
     tour of Atari shows in the Bridgeport area,  and like  ... party until
     everybody's ears bleed."

      Mr. Donoso concurred: "People hear Atari music systems in the
 hands of really competent, famous musicians, all the time." He said.
 "We think it's important, however, for audiences to realize that Atari
 computers, plus very large amplifiers, can even make essentially
 talent-free, chopless blighters like ourselves sound good! It's
 remarkable what an algorithmic composer, a decent sequencer, plus lots
 and lots of wattage can do!"

      Brian Gockley, organizer of the AtariFest, was quoted as saying:
 "All I wanted was a little dancing. That's all. There's nothing to do,
 at night, at these AtariFests. So I asked them, and now, all of a
 sudden, they've got a truck, and an entourage, and I've got security
 problems, and they're demanding backstage, full-service catering and a
 suite at the hotel. I don't know what's going to happen. I ... I'm not
 responsible.  No further comment."

     The article  precipitated various anti-computerist slurs on electronic
 message boards:  'Atarians,  Dancing?  You  should  come  just  to watch!'
 'Computer "Nerds"  dancing?   Hope you  have lots  of accident insurance,'
 they said. To which we reply: Hey, why do you think we  moved the  show to
 Hartford? IN  THE WORKS Organizers are feverishly working to assemble show
 activities for all members of the  Atari community.  In addition  to focus
 areas that  include Desktop Publishing, 8-bit and MIDI activities, CAF '92
 expects to offer:

  *  LYNX CONTESTS - We're getting the word out  to dealers  throughout the
     region  that  we'd  like  to  see  their  best  Lynx  competitors in a
     head-to-head battle of the Titans, with lots of prizes on the line.

  *  LEARNING BY DOING - In cooperation with participating  DTP specialists
     and   area   educators,   Connecticut   AtariFest   '92  will  publish
     student-produced newsletters on  both  days  of  the  show.  As pupils
     gather news  about the show, they'll learn the basics of editing, page
     layout and graphic design from some  of the  leaders of  the industry.
     And  they'll  be  demonstrating  how  Atari  computers can capture the
     immediacy of an event.

  *  ADVANCED COMMUNICATIONS - A  local  affiliate  of  the  American Radio
     Relay  League,  the  international  network  of  amateur  (ham)  radio
     operators  that  is  headquartered  in  Connecticut,  is  expected  to
     demonstrate  gizmos  for  the  Atarian with some electronics know-how.
     Learn how to set up a bulletin board  that bypasses  phone lines; send
     and receive  faxes via  radio. LAST CALL We're still looking for a few
     good men, women and  children  to  serve  as exhibitors/demonstrators,
     volunteers,  blurb  writers,  go-fers, flyer printers, telephoners ...
     you name it. If  you  have  a  particular  computing  or non-computing
     talent, contacts or resources that would help the show soar, or to get
     more information about CAF '92, contact:

          Brian Gockley, Chairman            Doug Finch, Vice Chairman
          Connecticut AtariFest '92          Connecticut AtariFest '92
          GEnie: B.GOCKLEY                   GEnie: D.FINCH7
          CompuServe: 75300,2514             CompuServe: 76337,1067
          18 Elmwood Avenue                  46 Park Avenue
          Bridgeport, CT 06605               Old Greenwich, CT 06870
          (203) 332-1721                     (203) 637-1034

 Scan the Connecticut AtariFest  '92 topic  on GEnie  (Atari ST Roundtable,
 Category 11, Topic 14, and other Atari RTs on GEnie) as well as ST, 8-bit,
 Vendor and Portfolio forums of CompuServe.

            A   S P E C I A L   H O L I D A Y   G R E E T I N G
                     HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY (JULY 4TH)
    Independent-Minded, All-American Atarians on this festive weekend.
   Enjoy yourselves, but remember, especially you mobile Portfolio users
                    out there...DON'T DOWNLOAD & DRIVE!


 > MNET! STR Spotlight                     MBBS GOES NETWORKING!

                             THE MNET IS BORN!

 by Dana P. Jacobson

     I started running a MichTron BBS almost 5 years ago.  The first
 version that I used was 2.0x and finally 3.0 came out and I, like many
 others, have been running the current version for quite some time.  During
 that time, MichTron has changed hands, and MBBS's author, Tim Purves, has
 "semi-retired" from the Atari platform.  Tim can be found now working on
 GEnie's navigation program, Aladdin.  He still owns the rights to MBBS,
 but so far, hasn't chosen to upgrade the software.

     There are a few features that most people who run MBBS would like to
 see added, but it may not happen anytime soon.  New transfer protocols and
 a better message editor are just a couple of items.  Another is the
 capability to network, a feature many of the available BBS software
 packages contain.  It's a shame to see people switch software, just to
 gain a few features lacking in their current software.  It's a shame that
 a lot of work gets tossed out and the process starting all over again with
 something new.

     Well, one of the desired features has been achieved recently. Yes,
 networking is now possible thanks to an innovative MBBS SysOp from Texas.
 Jeff Wells, who has published two MichTron Command Language (MCL) articles
 in Atari Interface Magazine, has written some MCL code and a MBBS
 interactive program to allow MichTron systems to network with each other.

     So, what does all of this do?  Donald Zabawa, the SysOp of "Buffaloe
 Village BBS" in Philadelphia recently sent a brief description of what
 MNET does.  It's appropriate that we let him describe it:

                               WHAT IS MNET?

     MNET is a new addition to the MichTron BBS system that allows your
 messages to be sent to other MichTron BBS's throughout the country. The
 MNET program was written by Jeff Wells of Killeen, Texas and is available
 as shareware to any SysOp running MichTron BBS.

     The MNET Message area is a series of message bases that is  completely
 separate from the normal message areas; and has it's own message numbering
 system.  However, once in the MNET area, the  messages can be read,
 replied to, or post new messages and more,  the same as the normal message
 areas.  Just choose any option from  the MNET menu, or the options that
 follow each message as you read  them.

     Remember that your messages will be sent to BBS's all over  the
 country and read by a great many callers outside your normal  calling
 area.  So please use discretion in all your messages.

     As more and more BBS's become part of the MNET system  additional
 message areas will be added to cover topics of  specialized interests
 (Technical Help, Hobbies, Classifieds, User Groups, Programming, etc.).
 The list of possible subjects is endless.  As this list grows, not all
 participating BBS's will have all topics available.  The specific
 interests of individual BBS callers will determine the message topics each
 BBS will have available.  This will also allow a local area, with more
 than one MichTron BBS, to have different types of messages on each BBS for
 their many users that call all of them.

     With more people to read, and respond to these messages,there should
 be a lot of interest in the MNET section, so watch for it to grow fast.
 This will be a great opportunity to ask your  questions, or express
 opinions; and receive a response from fellow  BBS users from almost
 anywhere in the country.  This will make MNET even more valuable to you,
 the caller.

     So, how do you set it up; and how does it work?  Well, it's really
 simple, especially if you have some experience with writing or editing MCL
 code.  Even the least experienced SysOp can manage it with a little
 patience (like me!).  The shareware package comes with a number of files.
 First of all, there will be two CONFER files written in MCL, both
 uncompiled in case you wish to make some changes to fit your needs.  There
 are also two patch files which you need to edit, and "paste" into your
 main menu file (main.m).  One of the patch files must be broken down so
 that its first two command lines goes _first_ in your main.m file.  This
 must be down in order to work properly (more on this later).  The rest of
 this patch, and the other, just get entered (or cut and paste, and add) to
 your menu.  Another file is the MNET program, written in GFA Basic.  Other
 files included are your configuration, a system personalized TAG line, a
 node list, ARC.TTP, FZDSXFER.TTP, and two documentation files.  The docs
 aren't commercial quality, but simple enough to follow.

     Once you have all of your code finished and compiled, you're ready to
 set up the others so that the MNET program will read them and proceed
 accordingly.  The configuration file is a simple text file which,
 specifically, sets up your BBS system configuration, where each
 MNET-specific file is located, your BBS name, SysOp name, Node number, and
 the name and numbers for the MBBS system which you plan to network with.
 A few other lines complete this text.  The node list is simply the list of
 available MBBS systems to network with, but the text is laid out in a
 specific format so the MNET program can read it properly.

     Place all of the resulting files into your system according to your
 configuration files.  I must repeat, do so exactly as you set it up in
 your configuration file or the program (not the BBS) won't run properly,
 if at all (I learned how to de-bug that real quickly, with help!).  If all
 went well, you should be able to initiate the BBS system as you would
 normally.  But now, you have a separate area within your system that
 contains the MNET Message area!!  This is like adding an all new
 additional message base to your system.  You can read, reply, and enter
 messages as you now can in the regular message bases.  There's only one
 Conference active at the moment, but Jeff is almost ready with an update
 which will include up to 200+ message bases, if you want that many!  Also
 to be included is the means to send non-message files as well.  All
 messages that originate from each MNET system will be "tagged" with an
 'origin' notation so other systems will know where the messages
 originated.  To, From, Subject, Conference, and Message numbers are all
 saved just like the normal message base, as well.

     The MNET program is the heart of the networking system, as this
 program allows you to send and receive messages and files between systems.
 Here's what the MNET program does:

      o  Reads all configuration files and system-specific "key"
      o  Locates any new mail packets received at your system,
         un-ARC them, and place them in your MNET message area(s).
      o  Archives all outgoing message packets.
      o  Autodials your Hub system.
      o  Auto-logon sequence.
      o  Automatically downloads current mail packets from your Hub
      o  Automatically uploads mail packets from your system to the
         Hub system.
      o  Automatically logs you off the Hub system.
      o  Processes these new mail packets and places them in the
         message area.
      o  Performs maintenance, deletes old mail packets (over 30
         days, on Hub systems only).
      o  Displays the amount of mail packets and messages processed
         during that call, and the amount of time that you were
      o  Processes and saves a new node listing, if available.
      o  Then you manually bring the BBS back online, all done
         within minutes depending on the size of mail packets.

     So as you can see, the MNET program does quite a bit, in relatively
 little time.  Improvements are ongoing, and Jeff Wells has provided MBBS
 SysOps with a lot of help, both online and voice.

     MNET is relatively new, so systems running it are still small in
 numbers.  Presently, there are 15-20 boards running MNET, and more getting
 it set up.  Jeff hopes to get the word out to existing MichTron boards
 that networking is now available. Hopefully, as the word gets spread, more
 SysOps will join in.

     A little Jeff Wells biography:  Written numerous MBBS add-on programs,
 initially, "NFL Yesterday" which he wrote first for FoReM BBS software and
 ported it over to MBBS.  He's also written other games for MBBS, such as
 "Space Empire Elite" (similar to the one seen on FoReM and Turbo systems;
 "ProduceM" (be a big-time movie producer and watch the box office numbers
 climb); "Perrenlands" (a D&D game); "Empires" (create your ship and work
 with others within your empire to destroy other empires); and "MCL
 Baseball" (his best to-date).  He's also written a Doors program which
 will allow you to execute other programs by editing just one file; and
 "BBS Crash", a hard drive crash simulation which all of his new users can
 expect to experience when they first log on!

     If you're interested in learning more about MichTron BBS, or MNET,
 contact Jeff Wells on his Lone STar BBS at (817) 690-1993. Or, contact me
 via E-Mail on Delphi (DPJ), CIS (71051,3327 ), or GEnie (D.JACOBSON2).  If
 you call MichTron boards and your SysOp isn't yet aware of MNET, mention
 it to him/her.  With a little time, the MNET can expand and provide a
 great exchange of information and conversation!!  Join the MNET today!


 > STReport CONFIDENTIAL    "Rumors Tidbits Predictions Observations Tips"

 - London, UK                         ROBERT KATZ LEAVES ATARI UK

     According to Gary Lawman, Atari UK, Robert Katz  has left  Atari to go
 with Electronic  Arts in the UK.  Katz, well known by many UK Atarians, is
 superceded by Alistair Bodin.

 - Redmond, WA                        ATARI WITHDRAWS NINTENDO APPEAL

     Nintendo of America Inc., Nintendo Co. Ltd. and  Atari Corp. announced
 Wednesday  that  Atari  withdrew  its  appeal  of the verdict and judgment
 Nintendo was awarded in Atari's antitrust case against Nintendo.  The jury
 in Federal  Court cleared  Nintendo on  May first of charges by Atari that
 Nintendo had illegally tried to corner the home  video game  market in the
 USA during  the late  1980s.   Nintendo will  not proceed to recover court
 costs from Atari.

 - Cheshire, UK                         UK FORUM SYSOP KILLED IN CRASH

     David Moore, UKFORUM SYSOP,  was killed  in the  crash of  a restored,
 vintage British Spitfire.  David worked for Rolls Royce as a pilot, and at
 weekends flew their Spitfire  at  air  shows.    Today,  while  flying the
 Spitfire at  The Woodford Airshow, the wing tip touched the ground and the
 plane burst into flames.  David was a member of the UKFORUM Sysop team and
 his messages  from around  the world  will have been seen by most members.
 David was also a regular at all the  UKFORUM meets  and many  members will
 therefore know him personally.


     CIS has started a program for the benefit of shareware authors to help
 them get more of the registration fees.  Basically, if  an author  has his
 programs on  one of the CIS forums and supports the program online, he may
 register with CompuServe's SW registration program.  Users who wish to pay
 the  SW  registration  fee  can  have it added to their regular CompuServe
 monthly bill.  CIS will collect  all  the  registrations  and  forward the
 monies after  deducting a small handling fee.  The idea is to make it easy
 for folks to pay the shareware fee (without having to write out a separate
 check,  address  an  envelope,  mail  the  envelope, etc) the authors will
 benefit by more registrations that will outweigh the small handling fee.

     To date, at least  one author  of a  commercial program  has mentioned
 that he's going to convert it to shareware just so that he can participate
 in the program.    He  said  the  lack  of  local  atari  dealers  and the
 difficulties of dealing with distributors, combined with the piracy he has
 suffered  from,  makes  the  CIS  shareware  plan  more  viable  than  the
 commercial route.

 - Sunnyvale, CA                 JOHN B. JAINSCHIGG TO DO ANOTHER ISSUE

     Atari Explorer  magazine will enjoy the expert leadership and guidance
 of John B. Jainschigg for at least one more issue.   Jainschigg, acclaimed
 for having  brought Atari  Explorer to  "a cut  above" from almost certain
 extinction, was  recently reported  to have  left the  position of Editor.
 This announcement, when received throughout the Atari community, generated
 shock waves, world wide,  almost immediately.   Hopefully,  Atari will see
 the error of its ways and make every possible effort to keep Jainschigg at
 the helm of Explorer.  News of Jainschigg's temporary return  to Explorer,
 was followed shortly thereafter with News that Tina Brown editor of Vanity
 Fair, was drafted to be Editor of the world famous New Yorker Magazine.

 - Bellevue, WA                          GEMULATOR VIDEO TELLS ALL

     Darek Mihocka, Branch Always Software, is confident the GEMULATOR will
 become the  emulator of note in the PC world.  With Gemulator, you can run
 your favorite Atari ST,  MS-Dos  and  Windows  software  on  the  same PC.
 Gemulator includes  a card which allows the user to plug in any version of
 TOS, from 1.0 to the latest 2.6.  Two versions of TOS may be plugged in at
 once  to  facilitate  greater  compatibility  with  certain  ST  software.
 Amazingly, a user is able to  run two  different ST  programs at  the same
 time, each  using a  different version  of TOS  and running in a different
 screen resolution.  The video  is  quite  informative  and  most certainly
 establishes the  fact that  GEMULATOR is  here to  stay.  Gemulator can be
 ordered for a special introductory price of 199.00 until August 31, 1992.


 > STR Mail Call             "...a place for the readers to be heard"

                            STReport's MailBag

 From CIS

 #: 33296 S8/Hot Topics
     02-Jul-92  16:45:21
 Sb: #AEO #5 comments
 Fm: SYSOP*Ron Luks 76703,254
 To: All

     I feel that I must provide some additional details for those of you
 who have read Bob Brodie's comments in the latest issue of Atari Explorer
 Online.  While chastising me personally for not going along with his
 desires for private EMAIL responses, Bob went on to call the response he
 has received from CompuServe members as "pathetic."

     I have encouraged our membership to respond to the online support
 survey in public and in "the sunshine" rather than via EMAIL because I
 believe it is the most honest way to tally your feelings and get an
 accurate count.  I have also received a fair number of EMAIL comments, all
 of which will be forwarded to Bob at the conclusion of the survey. The
 results obtained have included not only specific responses, but many
 offered additional comments, criticisms, and suggestions regarding online

     Since these comments and votes have not yet been presented to Mr.
 Brodie (as I indicated to him in a telephone conversation last week), one
 can only wonder what he hopes to accomplish for himself or the Atari
 Corporation with these disparaging comments.  He has clearly expressed the
 preference for those "wonderful" messages of personal support he has
 received from GEnie in his column.  While every member is clearly
 encouraged to send a private communication to Mr. Brodie (or anyone else
 for that matter) if they feel it necessary or desirable or simply
 inappropriate for public posting, I cannot in good conscience tell our
 membership that they MUST respond in this way where the true totals and
 results will not be visible to the general public.  However, members
 wishing to respond to Bob's EMAIL number at 70007,3240 may certainly do

     I am quite confident, seeing the large number of public responses
 posted in the forum, that these, taken in conjunction with any private
 EMAIL, will show the CompuServe audience to be significant and worth the
 attentions of the Atari Corporation.  No matter what the published outcome
 of Mr. Brodie's personal survey may be, I promise the membership here that
 I will continue to pursue the online support of the Atari Corporation for
 the benefit of our worldwide audience of loyal Atari users.
    Ron Luks
    Atari Forums on CompuServe

 #: 66281 S1/Forum Business
     02-Jul-92  17:02:33
 Sb: #66264-#Online support survey
 Fm: SYSOP*Ron Luks 76703,254
 To: carl barron 75066,3204 (X)

     I've posted a formal reply to the comments in AEO #5 over in AtariArts
 (where the magazine is made available in Lib 15).

     To be honest, I didn't want to dignify the comments with a reply at
 all.  I personally have a pretty thick skin and can let comments like this
 slide off my back, but I received a number of EMAILs, as well as public
 messages about his editorial (or column or whatever it should be called)
 from our members who found the comments offensive.

     Although the magazine carries the (c)opyright of Atari, I'd like to
 let everyone know that this is the first time I've heard words like
 "pathetic" used in this context.  We have had (in the past) and are
 currently enjoying a very good relationship with most everyone at Atari
 Corp., from the top of the ladder (Sam) on down the line.  I find the
 folks at Atari to be hardworking in a very tough environment and economy,
 and most are working overtime to insure the success of the new machine.

     I do not believe these comments are representative of the feeling of
 most of the people at Atari and I don't want the members here to feel that
 Atari Corp is turning a deaf ear to them.  I consider this to be an
 unfortunate episode and a poor choice of words and would hope to see more
 care exercised in the future, and let it drop so that we can all
 concentrate on more positive efforts.

     These constant detractions from our efforts to support the Atari
 computer line are a waste of valuable energies that could be better

    As always, thanks for your support.
    Ron Luks

 #: 65946 S1/Forum Business
     27-Jun-92  18:08:27
 Sb: #65780-Online support survey
 Fm: Ray Parnell (UK) 70374,1016
 To: Bob Brodie [ATARI] 70007,3240


 I don't think that anyone is suggesting that Atari gives up or in any way
 reneges on it's contract with Genie. I raised the point that in Atari's
 latest annual report, the majority of sales seem to be taking place
 outside North America. The interests of those users is better served by
 CIS than Genie as there is no easy access to Genie from Europe.

 I would not wish to pre-empt the results of the survey, but most people
 would probably be happy to see a more regular Atari presence on CIS, even
 if you do not have the time to appear yourself.

 I hope that an 'amicable' solution can be achieved.


 From the FNET

 Conf : STReport Online
 Msg# : 20787/20895  Lines: 15  Read: 41
 Sent : Jun 26, 1992  at 3:51 PM
 Recv : Jun 28, 1992
 To   : Ralph Mariano
 From : Chris B. Herting at Fnet Node 556, Suitland-MD
 Subj : Re: <20710> ATARI EXPLORER - THE HARD

 Well, you pretty much summed the whole thing up.  Since Theives Guild has
 not been receiving messages from the Z*Net Conf. since last February, I
 have not been able to see their side of the story.  But the bottom line
 is, there really should be no fighting.  I think it is great, and I am
 sure many users will agree with me, that you are choosing to ignore Kovacs
 and Brodie.  That shows some class, it also shows who is more grown up.  I
 hope you do continue to keep ST-Report as the "Honest Online Magazine".
 STR may print rumors from time to time, but at least they tell the truth
 about Atari.  I would have to say your magazine is the first to finally
 stand up to Atari and tell them off.  I would say more or less, STR
 represents MOST of the userbase.  Z*Net represents Atari.  They do not
 care about the U.S. market, and they do not care about their customers.
 Sometimes you have to wonder if they really even care about themselves.  I
 was told yesterday by a FORMER Atari user that Atari dropped the TT line.
 Is any of this true??

 Editor Note:
     Chris about the TT being discontinued, STReport has no information at
 all about Atari doing so.  To go further, we at STR have tried to be as
 truthful as humanly possible with our readers through the years, this is
 our ultimate goal.  Apparently it shows, our readership has not faltered
 a bit.  In fact, it has grown.  As for znet, Ron Kovacs has been doing his
 best to bring forth a publication that appeals to his readers, there is
 nothing wrong with that.  Its true that lately, a perception on the part
 of many Atarians is that znet is no more, since it was absorbed by Atari's
 AEO, but I find that to hard to believe.  ZNET will be back, once again
 _independent and free_ of any undue internal influences.  That's the right
 way and only way it should be.. for _any_ publication.  Especially those
 publications which cover the industry as does STReport and ZNET.

 From GEnie

 Category 1,  Topic 2
 Message 118       Fri Jul 03, 1992
 D.ELLIS16 [* AeroStar *]     at 11:17 EDT

 I too sent a GE-mail, But will also cast my vote here. Stay here on GEnie.
 I am an American serviceman stationed in Japan. This (GEnie) is just about
 my only informational source for Atari information.

            ***    STAY HERE, Please  ***


 The  JELLY-BOWL  is at it again...

 Category 18,  Topic 6
 Message 1         Sun Jun 28, 1992
 J.EIDSVOOG1 [CodeHead]       at 08:48 EDT

 I was awakened about 40 minutes ago (5AM) by the biggest earthquake my
 wife and I have felt in the sixteen years we've lived in California.  In
 fact I just felt another aftershock as I typed the last sentence (with
 fingers poised over the power switch to protect the hard drives).

 No reports are in yet, but it seemed like this one should be well over
 6.0.  One interesting thing about earthquakes (wow, another aftershock),
 is how long it takes for information to come in about them.

 This one started with rapid shaking for about ten seconds followed by
 long, slow swaying for another 40 seconds or so, although it seemed like
 about 2 minutes.  <grin>

 We have 3 house guests, two from Arizona and one from Minnesota. It's nice
 that they could have something memorable to bring back with them.

  You LA eyewitness reporter,
  John Eidsvoog

 From GEnie

 The unrest over, the long overdue, FSMGDOS continues..

 Category 14,  Topic 18
 Message 25        Mon Jun 29, 1992
 A.FASOLDT [Al Fasoldt]       at 00:04 EDT

     I suggest that all of us who believed Atari when the official line was
 that FSM GDOS was ready except for the packaging should gather together
 and suspend our belief in this latest reason for a delay.

     Since it is now clear that FSM GDOS was *not* being delayed because of
 packaging problems, someone at Atari was less than honest about the
 subject.  That's not good, folks. It's baaaad. It shows what little
 respect Atari's senior management has for all of us.

     It also means the same people who failed to tell the story straight
 before are now telling a different story now (legal troubles? With nothing
 to show as proof?), and I, for one, do not believe we are being told the
 truth.  Again.


 Category 14,  Topic 18
 Message 26        Mon Jun 29, 1992
 R.NOAK                       at 02:06 EDT

     I suppose that it couldn't be that the packaging _was_ a hold up and
 _then_ this legal thing cropped up. Nah, that couldn't be it. Atari _must_
 be lying to us all.  Sheesh.  Come on.  There are hundreds of reasons why
 software does not reach market when it is supposed to. Ask Nathan at ISD
 about the delay for Calamus SL.  Ask Softlogik about delays for
 PageStream.  At times it seemed that neither program would ever make it to
 market, but both arrived.  Late, yes, but, as the old cliche goes, "Better
 late than never."

     I prefer to believe that these delays will perhaps give us a better,
 more bug-free FSM GDOS.  As it is, FSM works with Touch Up, Easy Draw,
 Silhouette, and others that I can't remember off-hand. It _is_ available
 now from GoldLeaf.

     Call my attitude "pollyanna-ish" if you like, but I have some faith in
 "Atari's senior management".  If my company were involved with legal
 problems, I doubt that I would discuss them in a national forum either for
 fear of prejudicing any case I might have.

 Randy @ Southlake, Inc.


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 Since 1987                 copyright   1987-92                     No.8.27
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